Secretary agriculture visits South Punjab areas to assess rain impact on crops, orchards

MULTAN: Secretary agriculture South Punjab Saqib Ali Ateel Thursday visited parts of South Punjab agriculture landscape to personally witness impact of rains on crops and orchards and to issue guidelines to farmers on how to cope with any post-rain trouble in the making.

Saqib visited crop areas in Bahawalpur, Noor Pur, Ahmad Pur Sharqia, Channi Goth, and Liaquat Pur where he along with agriculture experts witnessed vegetables, wheat and fodder crops besides orchards, says an official release issued here.

Overall condition of wheat crop was satisfactory in Bahawalpur, Saqib Ateel said adding that wheat sown on time faced no damage and there would be no adverse impact on production. However, rain delayed sowing of late wheat varieties, he added.

He, however, feared potential of fungus attack and other diseases on mango orchards and ordered officials to issue guidelines to farmers to enable them counter any trouble in time.

He said that climate change and resultant weather behavior was causing losses to farmers and stressed on the need to grow more trees to off-set the climate change impact.

He said that provincial government was providing a safety cover to farmers in the form of crop insurance to compensate their losses and above all keep them away from worries.

He said, government was taking practical steps to improve cotton area and production and a special crop insurance policy has been introduced for cotton farmers to ensure they get profit. He said that fertilizers, pesticides and seed outlets have been allowed to remain open round the clock to ensure their availability for Kharif and Rabi crops.

He instructed field formations to convince farmers cultivate cotton.

He also asked officials to issue guidelines to farmers on how to perform sowing and harvesting crops while observing SOPs meant to check speared of novel coronavirus.