Crop planting has expanded to a new record of 110.45 million hectares, rising 5.7% over last year and setting the stage for another bumper harvest.
Crop area is likely to increase further as rice planting is still continuing, although at a slow pace as the monsoon season is coming to an end.
Sowing of pulses, coarse cereals, millets and oilseeds is almost over. The final sowing figures for kharif season will be finalised on October 1, 2020 as monsoon is likely to start retreating from western Rajasthan around mid-September.
Agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar said timely preparation to supply inputs like seeds, pesticides, fertilizers, machinery and credit has made it possible for large coverage even during pandemic lockdown conditions.
“Credit goes to farmers. They responded well to our schemes and programmes and created a record amid adverse situation,” he said.
The higher coverage of area is also due to above normal rainfall this year.
“The actual rainfall received in the country is 7% more than the normal rainfall. There was less precipitation in July but June and August saw more than normal rainfall helping cultivation of crops in all parts of the country,” said a senior agriculture ministry official.
The key reservoirs and dams across the country are also brimming due to good distribution of rainfall. This will help farmers in the coming Rabi season as well as in the next Kharif season also.
“The live water storage available in 123 reservoirs in the country is 102% of live storage of corresponding period of last year,” he said.
The official said that the country is likely to get bumper production this year.
“Planting looks healthy across the country except in few pockets of Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra and Gujarat where there are reports of crop damages due to excessive rains and floods. However, overall the situation looks better,” he said.