Heavy rain and strong winds on Sunday held up procurement and lifting of grains in markets, making farmers and officials of purchasing agencies anxious.
Moreover, although the district administration had promised to provide proper covers to protect the grains, it failed to do so leading to heaps of wheat getting wet in the rain.
With wheat grains losing their polish, heavy rains only increased the chances of more moisture content in the grains that have reached the grain markets.
Though harvesting of standing crop was at the fag end, untimely and intermittent rain dampened the spirits of farmers as wet and moisture-laden crop could not be harvested. In Ghanaur, Nabha, Bhadson, Patiala and Patran villages, most of the standing crop was flattened.
Manjit Singh, a resident of Pedan village, said his harvested crop had got wet as it was kept in the open. He had brought his crop to the Dhangera grain market on Saturday afternoon, but purchasing agencies did not buy it. "There is no arrangement of covers in the market," Manjit said while trying to sweep the water away with the help of a broom. "It will take four sunny days for the water to evaporate from the grains."
Another farmer, Jaswinder Singh of Kaul village near Nabha said he had harvested half of his wheat crop, but the remaining standing crop had been flattened in the pool of water due to rain. He said chances of blackening of the grains were very high in standing crop.
About 6.94 lakh metric tonnes of wheat has been procured across the grain markets. "We have bought the maximum stock in the last two days after which the lifting process has slowed down," an official of a purchasing agency said.
"The purchased stock got completely wet, hence lifting could not be carried out due to moisture content in the grains," the official added.