Chandigarh, June 9 (IANS) Aiming for sustainable water management, the Punjab government here on Sunday announced that it would promote micro-irrigation of maize on 1,000 acres this season.
For 2019, the government has set a target of irrigating 1.5 lakh hectares. Of this, micro-irrigation of maize crop in 1,000 acres would be undertaken. While 900 acres would have surface-based drip system, the remaining sub-surface-based drip system, Tandrust Punjab Mission Director K.S. Pannu said.
Four micro-irrigation companies would take up drip irrigation projects for maize in 10 acres each, Pannu said.
Dharminder Kumar, Principal Chief Conservator of Soil, said drip irrigation would help conserve water and increase yield. The department is ready to launch it on a large scale.
Experts from Punjab Agricultural University said they had conducted sub-surface drip irrigation experiments during the maize-wheat-moong cycle and it should be promoted on a mass scale.
The companies also urged reducing the 12 per cent goods and services tax (GST) on micro-irrigation to zero.
Earlier, a pilot micro-irrigation project was conducted for cotton by the Soil Conservation Department. Under it 200 acres of cotton crop was brought under the drip irrigation system.