Recent spell of rains and windstorm have caused damage to crops of wheat, canola, gram and sunflower, but at the same time the showers have left some positive effect on sugarcane crop.
Agri Forum Pakistan Chairman Muhammad Ibrahim Mughal said this while talking to the media here on Saturday.
He claimed that rains damaged cotton crop over an area of 25,000 to 30,000 acres, forcing farmers to cultivate their land again.
Besides cotton, he said, rains affected around 1.3 million maunds of wheat, 200,000 maunds of canola, 50,000 maunds of gram and 15,000 maunds of sunflower.
According to Mughal, the meteorological department had expected rains at the end of March, which would have been beneficial for Rabi crops, but unfortunately these came in mid-April.
“Rains not only delayed harvesting of Rabi crops but also pushed forward sowing of Kharif crops.” He sought government’s help for the farmers who had suffered losses.
This year, cotton will be sown over an area of 8.5 million acres and rice over six million acres. Sugarcane crop will be planted on 2.6 million acres. Mughal also called for reducing prices of fertilisers to half the current level and exempting tube wells from load-shedding to ensure timely cultivation of crops.
Published in The Express Tribune, April 22nd, 2012.