Both the ministers also said Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar is spreading misleading propaganda against Punjab on this issue of stubble burning.
They said as per the Central Pollution Control Board, Punjab’s Air Quality Index is better than Haryana.
The ministers said according to the data till date many cities of Haryana are in the first 10 cities in the list of the most polluted cities in India, including Hisar, Faridabad, Sirsa, Rohtak, Sonepat and Bhiwani, etc., while from Punjab, no city is in the first 10.
This clearly shows that stubble is being set on fire more in Haryana than in Punjab. They also accused the Lt Governor of Delhi of playing politics at the behest of the Centre on the issue of stubble burning and writing letters to the Chief Minister of Punjab on this matter without any authority.
Dhaliwal and Hayer said stubble burning and crop residue management is a joint issue of many states of northern India, but the Central government is playing politics instead of supporting Punjab in this matter.
They said the Punjab and Delhi government prepared a proposal, which was sent to the Centre to give assistance of Rs 2,500 per acre to the farmers for crop residue management and stubble management.
As per the proposal, the Punjab government had to contribute Rs 500, the Delhi government also Rs 500 and the Centre to contribute Rs 1,500, but the Central government rejected this proposal.
Agriculture Minister Dhaliwal said cases of stubble burning have fallen down enormously. He said sanctions for 42,342 subsidised machines for stubble management have been given to farmers.
Besides, the Agriculture Department has given machines to small farmers for stubble management for free use. Due to these efforts of the government, this year, two million tonnes of straw has been baled, compared to 1.2 million last year.
Environment Minister Hayer said that despite the Centre not providing any help for stubble management, the target given by the Centre for Punjab for stubble management is being fulfilled 100 per cent at its own level.
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