Amid fears of a deficient monsoon this year, the Centre on Monday promised to ensure adequate supply of diesel and power to northwestern states such as Punjab and Haryana for maintaining paddy yield.
It also said that the states would continue to get 75% of the unallocated electricity being supplied to them. "Secretary, ministry of petroleum and natural gas has been asked to ensure availability of diesel in the states, especially in north-west India," a statement by the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said. The government is already supplying three-fourth of the unallocated power supply to the northwestern states including Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.
"Power availability for agricultural purposes will be ensured so that yield of rice is not adversely affected," the statement said.
The monsoon has been erratic so far as rainfall is 22% less than the long-period average across the country between June 1 and July 15 this year. During the period, rainfall in north-west areas has been 33% lower than the long-period average.
North-western states including Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh are granaries for the government as maximum public procurement is made there.