LAHORE: Punjab Agriculture Minister Malik Ahmad Ali Aulakh has said that cotton plays a significant role in the uplift of farmers and the economy. Talking to a delegation of farmers at his office on Friday, he said that the leaf curl virus had been witnessed in few areas where cotton was being sown. He advised farmers to pay special attention to plants and water the crops sufficiently and timely besides ensuring the proper provision of other necessary inputs. The virus bends the contaminated plant’s leaves upward and bears leaf-like enations associated with vein thickening on the underside of the plant hence the name leaf curl virus. The cotton leaf curl virus devastated the Pakistani cotton industry in the early 1990s where it caused an estimated yield reduction of 30-35%.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 28th, 2012.