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Stubble Burning: Delhi Begins Spraying of Pusa Bio-Decomposer on the Fields

Chintu Das
Chintu Das
Bio-Decomposer Spraying

The Delhi government has begun spraying the Pusa bio-decomposer across farms in National Capital, environment minister Gopal Rai said. He said that the process started in the fields at Fatehpur Jat village, adding that it will be done at more villages in the days to come.

The minister told that “The bio-decomposer has helped the Delhi attain great results in making stubble management pollution-free. The number of farmers getting the spraying done has increased as compared to last year. Farmers who have not yet taken part in this environment-friendly practice can apply themselves by calling on- 9643844287”.

Johnny Pehalwan's basmati rice crop, which covered 10 acres, was placed first on the list. A tractor with a tank full of the solution was driven around the field, spraying the solution on the stubble. 

"Earlier, we used to burn the stubble," Pehalwan explained. Last year, the solution was sprayed here as well, and we seem to have observed an improvement in wheat output this season." This year's paddy harvest, which he profited from, was sold at Narela mandi. 

While the solution is provided free of charge, farm tools such as the rotavator remain out of reach for many farmers. 

rotavator is a heavy instrument that helps mix the decomposer with the straw and integrate it into the soil, according to K Annapurna, former head of the Microbiology department of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute, where the decomposer was produced. Because moisture aids decomposition, the land would need to be watered thereafter. "These activities are required for healthy paddy straw decomposition," she noted. 

Farmers, on the other hand, have been denied access to these by the government. Rotavators aren't on the list of farm equipment that can be subsidised by the government. "Farmers will have to make their own arrangements," A P Saini, joint director (Agriculture) said. 

Pappan Singh Gahlot, a farmer from Tigipur village, has written to the district government asking assistance in obtaining turning and baling equipment, as well as tractors, because small farmers have found it impossible to acquire farm tools. "How do you tackle stubble without basic implements?" he wondered. 

The decomposer is helpful, according to Sahdev Maan, a farmer from Holambi Khurd village in North Delhi, whose tractor was hired by the government for the spraying. On Monday, he began spraying a 20-acre paddy field.

However, he believes that most farmers would be unable to afford rotavators, which start at approximately Rs 90,000, and that others will have to make do with a harrow, a smaller equipment linked to a tractor. He claims that even borrowing rotavators may be costly due to the consumption of diesel. 

Farmers also brought up additional issues. Farmers in North Delhi, according to Gahlot, frequently prefer to produce a vegetable crop in between rice and wheat seasons. Pehalwan agreed that spinach is commonly cultivated after rice harvest and before wheat is sown, and that such farmers are unlikely to wait for the decomposer to do its job. 

According to Dr. Annapurna, the decomposer may transform the waste into compost in as little as 15-20 days. 

Gahlot went on to say that while some farmers have already harvested their paddy, others who are planting different types may only be able to harvest later, making the decomposer impossible to utilise. 

Several farmers in Delhi, according to Saini, continue to hire labourers to harvest their crops since the straw left over from the harvest may be sold. Wheat will be sown in the second week of November this year, according to him. 

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