Comprehensive programme launched for agri sector promotion

SIALKOT: The Punjab government has launched a comprehensive programme for promoting the agriculture sector along modern lines, and to save irrigation water from wastage through a modern irrigation system.

Sources in the agriculture department told APP on Sunday that 25 per cent of canal water, 30 per cent watercourses and 35 per cent water is wasted in agriculture fields from available water resources as a result of which the availability of water has reduced to 45 million acre-feet whereas the required level of water is 65 million acre-feet – a volume which is needed for crops annually in Punjab.

According to the experts, the agriculture sector has been confronted with serious shortages of water since long and it will worsen in the future.

The agriculture experts urged upon the farmer community that they should adopt modern irrigation technology for avoiding the wastage of irrigation water.

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The adoption of a modern irrigation system will help in saving 40 to 60 per cent water as well as facilitate in saving 30 to 60 per cent in the wastage of fertilizer.

Sources said that the Punjab government is committed to bringing about revolutionary changes in the agriculture sector on a top priority basis and many steps have already been taken in this regard. The basic concept of this plan is to promote the agriculture sector on modern lines to make it profitable and to enhance its overall productivity.

The Punjab government has set aside Rs4.76 billion for a three-year plan for the promotion of per acre yield in the province.

Drip irrigation system under the programme has been installed on over 11,000 acres of land while the solar system for drip sprinklers has also been installed in over 1500 acres of land in various parts of the Punjab province.

Similarly, under the government’s initiatives, special steps have also been taken for promoting tunnel farming technology and so far tunnel farming technology have been installed in over 350 acres of land in Punjab.

Tunnel farming will help promote growing off-season vegetables around the year which will be supportive in improving the economic conditions of the growers of the Province. The programme will pave the way for introducing modern and profitable farming, enhancing productivity, lessening the productivity expenditures, better utilisation of fertilisers and pesticides and inevitably save water.

The government will provide 80 per cent subsidy on installation of solar systems while the government will also provide 50 per cent subsidy on the installation of tunnels (Tunnel farm Technology) and 60 per cent subsidy for sprinkler irrigation in the province, sources added.

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