Against official advisories not to sow paddy, Budgam hopes better Kharif harvest

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Imtiyaz Pandow

Budgam, Sep 23: Farmers in Kashmir Valley are expecting a better paddy yield this year. This is despite official advisories to the farmers not to sow the conventional crops like paddy and opt for other crops for possibility of drought during the Kharif season.
Like every part of the Valley, the paddy fields in this Central Kashmir district are abuzz with activity as farmers have commenced to harvest the yield.
In early April this year, when farmers were preparing to sow paddy seeds, Jammu and Kashmir Irrigation and Flood and Control (JKIFC) department issued an advisory, asking them to opt for alternative crops due to apprehension of drought this season amid lesser snowfall in winter.
Unfazed by the official advisories, the farmers continued to plant the paddy saplings. The incessant rains abetted the farmers’ fears. The downpour was such that river Jehlum and its tributaries were flooded.
After planting the saplings, the farmers were asked by Agriculture department Budgam to be vigilant against the paddy blast disease. “There was not much damage due to the disease,” said Ghulam Qadir, a farmer.
“The year, the yield is exceptional as it is a special gift o Almighty,” Qadir added. (INS)