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Substantial increase in Rabi crop by 4% at nearly 600 lakh ha

Pritam Kashyap
Pritam Kashyap
Substantial increase in Rabi crop by 4% at nearly 600 lakh ha

A substantial increase in the planting of wheat, gram and mustard crops pushed up the rabi sown area this week to nearly 598 lakh hectares nearly 4.3 per cent higher than 573 lakh hectares planted in the corresponding week last year, according to sowing data released by the Agriculture Ministry on December 25. 

The area under wheat stood at around 313 lakh hectares, nearly 16 lakh hectares more than 297 lakh hectares planted in the same week in the previous rabi season. The wheat sowing area went by 11.81 lakh hectares in Madhya Pradesh, 2.17 lakh hectares in Maharashtra, 1.47 in Gujarat and by 1 lakh hectares in Bihar, while farmers in Rajasthan planted around 2 lakh hectares less in the current season. 

The area under gram was around 103 lakh hectares, 8 per cent more than around 95 lakh hectares planted in the same period last year. This increase in gram area, reported mainly from Maharashtra and Gujarat, has led to the area under pulses going up to over 149 lakh hectares, 5.4 per cent more than the corresponding period in the 2019-20 rabi season. Mustard is another crop which witnessed record planting this year. The planting has been completed in nearly 72 lakh hectares, 9 per cent more than nearly 66 lakh hectares sown in the same period last year. This helped the total oilseeds area go up to nearly 79 lakh hectares, which is 7 per cent more than that in the week in the 2019-20 seasons. Jharkhand and Rajasthan mainly accounted for the increase in oilseeds area. 

The decrease in the planting of jowar, maize and barley resulted in the total coarse cereals dropping by nearly 7 per cent to 43 lakh hectares as compared to the same period last year. There is a similar decline in the area under winter rice due to a drop in paddy area in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. 

According to water storage released by the Central Water Commission on December 25, a total of 128 major reservoirs in the country have cumulate water storage of 127.73 billion cubic metres (BCM), which is 8 per cent lower than 138.95 BCM in the corresponding week last week. 

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