According to the sources, it has been reported that sowing of paddy in India so far is significantly lower as compared to the average sowing in the previous five years. The farmers, not just in States that have received low rainfall, such as Odisha, Haryana, Assam, Chhattisgarh and West Bengal, but also in Punjab, which received good ‘pre-monsoon’ rains last week, have adopted a ‘wait-and-watch’ approach. While, on the bright side, rice sowing is likely to gather pace in the last week of June and early July, as conditions are becoming favourable for a further advance of the South-West monsoon after 24th June, according to the Indian Meteorological Department.
Further, in this matter it has been indicated that in some more parts of the north Arabian Sea and Gujarat, the remaining parts of west Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and most parts of Haryana, Chandigarh, Delhi, Punjab and east Rajasthan are likely to get covered by the monsoon this week. Meanwhile, now the advisories are being sent to farmers to undertake transplanting of rice seedlings and continue nursery sowing of rice in almost all major rice growing States including Punjab, Haryana, West Bengal, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, as narrated by an official of the Agriculture Ministry.
Furthermore, in this context the farmers in coastal Karnataka and Kerala as well as in Assam, which may get a short-spell of heavy rains, have been advised to provide for proper drainage in rice fields and drain out excess water from rice nursery and transplant the rice field and orchards to avoid water stagnation accordingly. However, the timing of sowing is very important as not just early sowing but late sowing could also spoil a crop as a flood at the wrong time could harm the seed as pointed out by an agriculture expert Mr VN Saroja as per sources.