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Will PM Narendra Modi Stub the Stubble?

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Farmers across the world burn their stubble and so do they in India. They should not do it, it is an
 

The Unearth Bulletin

November 6 · Issue #73 · View online
Towards a Sustainable & Inclusive World

Farmers across the world burn their stubble and so do they in India. They should not do it, it is an environmentally harmful exercise that is aided by the new harvesting technologies (manual harvesting leaves little stubble to burn.) In India as well, satellite imagery shows crops being burnt from Kashmir to Tamil Nadu. The not so poor Punjab farmer, however, is located on a path when his burning coincides with changing wind patterns and the smoke reaches Delhi and then moves on to the most populated Ganga river valley. Millions of lives are probably consumed by this smoke between Punjab and Kolkata, but since no one measures it well enough, we can’t be sure.
Meanwhile, scores of studies show that the Punjab farmer would be richer if he grew vegetables and fruits instead of rice, his land would be more productive, he would need lesser chemicals and his life and those of his neighbours would be healthier.  
So then what is the problem? Does any politician have faith in science and the gumption to take what might appear to be a political risk? Indira Gandhi took a big risk when she personally coordinated efforts to put together the Green revolution. Punjab and India benefited massively from her game-changing efforts. Mr Narendra Modi has not yet shown any such inclination, and all we can do is hope.
-Laveesh Bhandari

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