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18 UP districts fail to check stubble burning
18 UP districts fail to check stubble burning

Lucknow, Oct 27 (TIWN) Despite warnings of strict action by Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, nearly 18 districts in the state have failed in checking stubble burning.

The glaring fact came to the fore in the review meeting conducted by chief secretary Durga Shankar Mishra on Tuesday. In a missive to all district magistrates on October 25, Mishra pinpointed the 18 districts, including nine from west UP — GB Nagar, Ghaziabad, Saharanpur, Shamli, Aligarh, Mathura, Sambhal, Meerut and Bulandshahr — for failing to take adequate measures to check stubble burning post-paddy harvesting season.
Bareilly and Rampur in Rohilkhand, too, have failed to take adequate measures to curb stubble burning. Similar is the case with Kheri, Pilibhit, Shahjahanpur, Fatehpur, Barabanki, Kanpur and Hardoi.
While the 18 districts have come on the radar of the state government, Mishra has asked all district authorities to take steps to arrest the looming problem with immediate effect. This includes daily monitoring and taking legal action against those flouting the norms.
The situation has surfaced despite the strict directives of the Supreme Court and National Green Tribunal to check stubble (NGT) year after year. The UP government, too, has issued four government orders on the issue since 2019 — the recent one on October 10 this year.
UP reportedly recorded 80 instances of crop burning till October 6 against 52 recorded last year, according to the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) that tracks such fires via satellite. In 2020, 101 incidents of stubble burning were repcorded.
As per an estimate, UP is the highest producer of agricultural residues (40 MT) followed by Maharashtra (31MT) and Punjab (28 MT). Last year, the state agriculture department had proposed feeding stubble to stray cattle as a key measure to dispose of the agricultural residue. The government had also proposed funding carriage of stubble to shelter homes meant for stray cattle.
Punjab government had recently invited the ire of the Union environment ministry as its minister Bhupendra Yadav expressed “concern and dissatisfaction” over the state’s inadeqaute preparedness to take concrete action towards Air Quality Management. Yadav had slammed the Punjab government “for not planning adequately” to manage around 5.75 million tons of stubble which is likely to have an adverse impact on the air quality in Delhi and NCR region.

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