Central team visits cotton fields in Bathinda, to submit report in three days | punjab$bhatinda | Hindustan Times
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Central team visits cotton fields in Bathinda, to submit report in three days

The central team of agriculture experts visited Malwa’s cotton belt to take stock of whitefly attack on cotton crop especially in Fazilka district.

punjab Updated: Jul 16, 2016 15:04 IST
Navrajdeep Singh
Experts inspecting cotton crop in Fazilka on Friday.
Experts inspecting cotton crop in Fazilka on Friday.(HT Photo)

The central team of agriculture experts visited Malwa’s cotton belt to take stock of whitefly attack on cotton crop especially in Fazilka district.

The three-member team, led by SN Sushil, plant protection adviser, found that at least 4,400 hectare of cotton area is under whitefly attack only in border belt of Punjab in Fazilka, which has total 36,000 hectare of cotton area.

In Abohar and Khuhian Sarwar blocks of Fazilka district, the attack is above Economic threshold level, which means more than eight adult insects per leaf were detected. Also, the team found lack of irrigation resources as one of the main reasons, behind pest attack this year.

“In many of the areas, the crop has become prone to whitefly attack as it has not been properly irrigated due to shortage of water resources,” Sushil said. He added that the whitefly attack is intense in those areas where the orchards were situated adjacent to cotton fields.

“We will submit the report to central government in this regard within three days,” he said.

The team included two other experts—BS Phogat, assistant plant protection adviser and KS Kapoor, assistant director plant protection.

However, the officials of agriculture experts briefed central team about failure of state’s irrigation department in releasing water in local canals and distributaries for irrigation purpose.

“Even after the irrigation department released water In Bhagsar, Arrniwala and Malukpura minors, but the water failed to reach at tail ends,” agriculture officials said.

Meanwhile, the central team also interacted with farmers in Sardarpura, Gumjaal, Panniwal Mahla, Panjokosia and Killianwali villages.

“The farmers have been advised to go with pesticide spray on the recommendations of agriculture department, in case there would be no rainfall in coming two days,”, the experts advised.

The experts also randomly visited villages in Muktsar, Bathinda and Mansa district and inspected cotton fields.

Director agriculture Jasbir Singh Bains said, “Though the attack in Fazilka is above economic threshold level but it is under control and there was no damage so far. The field teams have been asked to remain vigilant to ensure that the farmers sprayed recommended pesticides correctly,” Bains said.