The agriculture department has failed to ensure the avaibility of fungicide 'Propoconizole' for farmers to control tthe spread of yellow rust in the wheat crop, even as the disease has spread to other areas.
The agriculture department is now encouraging farmers to spray 'Khatti Lassi' ( yoghurt) into their fields. The department has estimated that more than 25 villages have been impacted by the spread of the disease.
The disease has been identified in Chhadauri, Manderan, Ulladani, Rakkran Bet, Ghumana, Behram, Kattan, Kaleran, Sudha Majara, Daulatpur, Ranewal Bagh, Mujjaffarpur, Hussainpur, Kataria, Bhaddi, Bulllowal, Rattewal and other areas of district.
The department has been forced to organise awareness camps for farmers. A camp was held at Chiddauri village in which agriculture director Mangal Singh Sandhu informed farmers on measures to prevent and control the disease. He and other department officials motivated farmers to use natural features of 'Khatti Lassi' in controlling the disease, whenever they notice it into their fields.
Chief agriculture officer Sarbjeet Singh Kandhari said, "Fungicide propoconizole was not available with the department as there was litigation involving it."
However, he claimed that spraying a litre 'Khatti Lassi' and 15 litre water into affected areas of wheat crop can stop the spread of the disease. He added that the Indian Council of Agricultural Research had also recommended the use of 'Khatti Lassi'.
He added that a that a spell of rain along with winds in last week had worried the department and the clear weather had helped the department.
He claimed that the farmers were aware of the fungicide and admitted that around 500 acres of wheat crop had been hit by yellow rust.