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Net Cropped Area of Kharif Season Crops increases by 9% over last year

Kharif sowing area in the country has so far increased by 9% versus previous year. This latest Kharif sowing report was released by the Agriculture Ministry on August 21. As against last year’s corresponding period of 979.25 lakh hectares, sowing this year has reached 1062.93 Lakh hectares.

Abhijeet Banerjee

Total sowing area coverage under Kharif crops has registered an increase of nearly 9% this year compared to the corresponding period of the last year. Agriculture Ministry reported that as on August 21, 2020 Kharif crops planted area was sown in nearly 1 thousand 63 lakh hectare area of the country. 

In case of rice, there has been increase of nearly 12 per cent in its total sowing area whereas Oilseed cultivation has registered a jump of more than 14 per cent. The agriculture ministry said on Friday as on Aug. 21, total cropped area of Kharif crops had reached 1,062.93 Lakh hectare area, against 979.15 lakh hectare area during the corresponding period of last year. Area has thus increased by 9% roughly compared to last year same period. 

Despite the COVID 19 outbreak, summer planting operation was not hampered this year, because of necessary steps taken by the government.  With the early arrival of Southwest monsoon across many states, farmers in many parts of the country took up Kharif cultivation early this year.  The Central Water Commission monitors the live storage status of 123 reservoirs around the country on a weekly basis. The department reported last week that the on the whole the water reservoir storage position is better than the corresponding period of last year in the country. It is also better than the average storage level of the last ten years during the corresponding period. On the first week of August The Central Water Commission (CWC) had reported that under present scenario the live water storage in 123 reservoirs in different parts of the country was near 88% of the corresponding period of the last year.   

The Agriculture Ministry has reported a jump in Paddy acreage by 12 percent to 378.32 lakh hectares, compared with 338.65 lakh hectare area during the period under review. Similarly, the total planted area under pulses was up by 7 percent to 132.56 lakh hectare, against 124.15 lakh hectare area. Coarse cereals acreage rose to 174.06 lakh hectare from 166.80 lakh hectare, while sowing area of  oilseeds increased by 14% to 191.14 lakh hectare area from 167.53 lakh hectare area. Under sugarcane there has been a minor increment of 3.36% to 52.19 lakh hectare area, from 51.62 lakh hectare area. Cotton acreage has also increased by 3.36% to 127.69 lakh hectare area, from 123.54 lakh hectare area. The area under jute and Mesta was up marginally at 6.97 lakh hectare area versus 6.86 lakh hectare area a year ago. 

On the whole, sowing of summer season crops have progressed per the targets set by the Government. Earlier in the month of June, India’s weather department i.e. IMD has predicted country’s rainfall over the country is likely to be 104 percent of the long period average (LPA), during the second half of the season. Assuming the weather forecast turns out to be accurate, this will be the second straight year for India to receiving above average monsoon rainfall. The Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare’s (MOAFW) reported on July 31, 2020 that overall planting for the Kharif 2020 crop season was 14 percent higher (in area). Total Kharif crop area covered reached 1015.58 lakh ha area as per Government report on 14.08.2020. Therefore, week on week the net area cropped has increased by 47.5 Lakh hectares approximately. IMD’s forecast of higher rainfall than the normal versus previous year has raised hopes of a bumper Kharif produce this year. As on Aug. 20, the actual rainfall received in the country is 663 mm as against normal of 628.3 mm, the Agriculture Ministry reported.  

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