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High temperature to affect late sown wheat: experts

With wheat harvest going on in many states, experts feel that the sudden rise in mercury is going to affect the late sown crops, putting a dent on the overall production of the food grain.

delhi Updated: Apr 13, 2010 20:17 IST

With wheat harvest going on in many states, experts feel that the sudden rise in mercury is going to affect the late sown crops, putting a dent on the overall production of the food grain.

"The late crop of wheat, especially in Punjab, Haryana, Rajasthan and other areas with arid soil conditions, is going to be affected following high temperature," Haryana Agriculture University, Hissar, Vice Chancellor K S Khokhar told reporters on the sidelines of a Symposium in New Delhi.

He said about 20-25 per cent of area in Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan constitutes of late sown wheat.

Echoing a similar view, Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) Director H S Gupta said this will have marginal impact on the overall wheat production.

"Some wheat growing areas in eastern region are also affected due to adverse weather condition," he added.

According to official estimates, the country's total wheat output will be 80.28 million tonne this year. But the Agriculture Ministry expects the harvest to reach 82 million tonnes.

Wheat, which is sown during October-December period, is harvested from April till June.

A senior official of Punjab Agriculture Department told PTI that the high temperature will definitely impact the wheat crop, but the actual estimate would become clear in a week's time when the arrival picks up.

Punjab was hoping for 160 lakh tonne of wheat output on the back of favourable weather conditions in winter season.

"If the winter would have prolonged for couple of days in March, we would have crossed 160 lakh tonne mark. But now because of the rising temperature in March, we are likely to achieve crop output of 155 lakh tonne," he said.

"Besides rising temperature, the insufficient supply of water through canal system for irrigation is another reason which will make a dent on crop in these areas," said an expert.

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