ISLAMABAD: The government should fix the minimum support price of 40 kg wheat bag for the next season at the earliest to encourage farmers to grow more wheat to replace the crops lost due to floods, said Chaurhdy Faqir Ahmed of Pakistan Muslim League Nawaz (PML-N) legislator.
Speaking on a point of order in National Assembly, he asked the chairman of relevant standing committee of National Assembly to summon its meeting and recommend minimum support price of wheat. He also urged the government to ensure sufficient supplies of diesel in the country.
National Assembly Speaker Raja Pervez Ashraf asked minister for parliamentary affairs to look into the demands of the parliamentarian.
While the ongoing rains would positively impact all seasonal major and minor crops, fruits and vegetables, agricultural experts said here Monday.
They were of the view that the rains would particularly be most beneficial for wheat, which is major cash crop of the season and a mega source to fulfill the domestic requirements of staple food in the country.
The rains would have positive impact on wheat sown in rainfed areas across the country as well as oil seeds including mustard and canola and it would act as supplement for seed germination, said Food Security Commissioner Dr Imtiaz Ali Gopang.
He said that the second rain of current winter season would not only be beneficial for rain-fed areas but it would also benefit irrigated areas of the country as it would increase water level in mega storage resources and bridge the deficiency of water for irrigation.
He said due to these rains it was also expected that wheat sowing targets fixed for current season would also be achieved as sowing would gain further momentum in rain-fed areas across the country, particularly in Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan.
He further informed that Sindh and Punjab provinces have also started supply of free seeds distributions for flood hit districts, adding that it would revive the agriculture activity in effected areas and would help in achieving sowing targets and producing surplus output.
Commenting on the impact of current rains on different crops, Chairman Pakistan Agriculture Research Council, Dr Ghulam Muhammad Ali said that these rains are most beneficial for wheat as crop was in germination stage and will help to strengthen health of the plant to enhance local output during the season.
The rains would put positive impact on wheat sown in Potohar region and other rain-fed areas in the country, he said, adding that a large number of small scale farmers cultivating different minor crops and seasonal vegetables in these areas and timely rains will help them to enhance their farm income by enhancing output.
It is worth mentioning here that Price wheat sowing in Punjab Province has been completed over 13.9 percent area as the crop cultivation witnessed about 0.1 percent increase against the cultivation during the corresponding period of last year.
By the first week of current month (November), wheat crop sowing completed over 2, 257 thousand acres as against the set targets of 16, 220 thousand acres fixed for crop season 2022-23.
According to data provided by the crop reporting department of Punjab, the wheat sowing was gaining momentum in rain-fed areas of North Punjab due to timely rains and favorable weather conditions as wheat sowing was achieved by 12.1 percent and in South Punjab it was completed over 16.6 percent as against the set targets.
Meanwhile, wheat sowing targets in Khyber Pakhtunkhwas was achieved by 15.71 % as the crop sowing completed over 141,400 hectartes as against the set targets of 900,000 hectares.