25 FIRs over straw burning have Mansa farmers fuming - ECAS Punjab

25 FIRs over straw burning have Mansa farmers fuming

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Tribune News Service

Mansa, October 23

The Mansa police have registered 25 FIRs against farmers who are setting the crop residue on fire. The crackdown has farmers fuming and demanding the cancellation of FIRs.

“We are taking a strict action against the erring farmers who are burning stubble. Most FIRs have been registered against unidentified farmers under Section 188 (disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the Indian Penal Code,” said Surender Lamba, SSP, Mansa.

Farmers said they acknowledged the adverse effects of burning stubble but had no alternative in the absence of any financial assistance.

Accusing the state government of double standards, BKU (Ekta Ugrahan) secretary Shingara Singh Mann said: “In his meetings with farmers, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh had assured farmers that no new cases would be registered for stubble burning and even old cases would be cancelled, but the police are getting tough on farmers.”

He said the government had failed to provide any viable solution to manage stubble, besides a large number of farmers had not received a compensation of Rs 2,500 per acre announced by the state government last year for not burning stubble.

Over 19.7 million tonnes of paddy straw is generated in the state every year. The state government and the Punjab Pollution Control Board have been asking farmers not to burn stubble as it leads to loss of soil’s organic material, degradation of air quality and high SPM level.

The PPCB is taking the help of satellite images for identification of sites where the stubble is set on fire. After getting the images, a team is sent to the spot, which then sends its report to the administration for further action.

As air pollution rises due to burning of stubble, numerous ailments associated with respiratory tract also go up. “Stubble burning aggravates breathing problems, allergies and asthma attacks. It also depletes the red blood cell (RBC) count and adversely affects the oxygen carrying capacity of the body,” said Dr Vitul K Gupta, a health activist.

from The Tribune https://ift.tt/31C143S

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