Chandigarh, February 8
Cautioning the state governments against providing free water and electricity to farmers, agricultural scientists warned at the second day of 13th Punjab Science Congress, being held at Panjab University, that overuse and misuse of resources would convert the state into a desert soon.

With one meter of reduction of ground level each year and almost all hand pumps drying up in the state, the climate change is affecting the land fertility and crop pattern severely, claimed scientists today.

Agricultural researchers and eminent scientists proclaimed that water should be counted as a national asset. “Every drop of water should count” and “Right price should be imposed for water”, were the catchphrase given by Prof SS Johl, renowned agriculture economist and President of Indian Society of Agricultural Economics in an interview to The Tribune.

“The Punjab soil is getting dry with each passing year and the ground reality is that there is no water in the hand pumps. The government must wake up and discontinue the practice of granting free water, if it has to save Punjab,” he added. V-C of the Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, Faridkot, Prof SS Gill said, “The depletion in ozone layer is bound to cause more skin burns, allergies, cardiac problems and fertility in a big way. Research has been done that this would also cause problem in pregnancy and will increase death rate of students below four years of age.”

Source: Neha Miglani Tribune News Service