STAFF REPORT LHR: The recent spell of widespread rains have given a benefit of at least Rs 15 billion to the farmers at a very critical stage of crops especially, wheat, grams, mustards, oil seeds, vegetables and fodder.
“Rabi crops had been sown over 2.2 million acres of land in the province of Punjab. These crops need urgent watering at middle stage of their growth since irrigation canal had remained closed for de-silting purposes,” said Director General Agriculture Extension Services Punjab Dr Anjum Ali.
He said that rains had greatly benefited grams crops in rain fed areas and there were bright prospects of bumper production to the tune of 0.5 million tons this year, more than double of 2011-12 year production of 0.21 million tons.
According to him, the present condition of crops and atmospheric environment give hopes that Punjab would produce at least 100,000 tons more wheat this year to the tune of 18.5 million tons which was staple food of the nation.
Chairman Agri-Forum Pakistan Ibrahim Moghal said that there were one million irrigation tube wells, of which 0.8 million were run on diesel oil in the province. He said that one watering of crop by tube wells costs about Rs 10 billion, which had been done by the current spell of rains.