Pawar rules out drought-like situation in Punjab, Haryana
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Pawar rules out drought-like situation in Punjab, Haryana


Chandigarh: Union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar, promising to compensate farmers for incurring heavy input and irrigation costs due to rainfall scarcity, denied that a drought-like situation was prevailing in the states of Punjab and Haryana
Pawar rules out drought-like situation in Punjab, Haryana

The Centre would give compensation to the farmers in the form of subsidies which would be deposited directly into their accounts, said Pawar, who was touring the two states along with union minister for rural development and drinking water and sanitation Jairam Ramesh. "Over 85 per cent farmers have 'kisan' credit cards and we have asked the states to prepare the lists of farmers to be compensated so that the money could be deposited into their accounts," Pawar said.

He added that it was due to the "tremendous" efforts of the farmers in Punjab that the state had recorded 35.25 lakh hectares under paddy as against a target of 34.80 lakh hectares. The farmers, he said, would be adequately compensated for spending much more on diesel for irrigation in the absence of electricity supply during the sowing period.

Similarly, Haryana farmers would also be compensated, as the state ensured 19.73 lakh hectares under the crop as against a target of 22.80 lakh hectares. Haryana, the union minister said, remained the worst hit state with a 71 per cent rain deficit, while Punjab suffered 68 per cent less showers till August 7.

Jairam Ramesh announced that NABARD would release Rs 40 crore as emergency loans to the farmers of Punjab within a week as against the state's demand for Rs 26 crore in the wake of monsoon failure.

Both union ministers were in Chandigarh to hold review meetings with ministers and senior officials concerned from Punjab and Haryana in the wake of monsoon failure and its impact on the states in terms of crop situation and drinking water supply.
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