Khanewal -Farmers of district Khanewal have expressed fear that shortage of water in canals, uncertified seed and rust would seriously affect wheat production.

According to farmers, per acre yield of wheat will decline if adequate water is not released in canals .canals were dry for a long time and today irrigation department released water in canals but it is not sufficient and water will not reach at the fields which are at the Farmers relied on tubewells to irrigate land but due to the high prices of electricity and diesel Farmers could not afford tubewells so sufficient water is not given to the crop when needed.

Talking to this correspondent, farmers Haider Mehdi, Javed Haider, Najam and Musadaq Shah told that crops needed to be watered four to six times from sowing to harvesting and there was no water in canals for a long time and during the sowing season farmers faced problem of non-availability of certified seeds, due to negligence of the agriculture department sufficient quantity of certified seed of the wheat was not available in the market and farmers were forced to use their own wheat crop as seed, majority of the farmers have used uncertified seed of wheat which will affect the per acre yield of crop .

According to them another threat to this crop is of rust. Last year due to this disease per acre yield was very low and due to this country faced shortage of wheat and this year farmers are afraid of this and agriculture department,till this time has taken no notice of this and has taken no measures to avoid this disease in which leaf of the crop turn into yellow colour.

According to experts optimal conditions for wheat are to be well- fertilized, well-irrigated and provided certified seed. Adequate water for wheat is most important in the flowering growth stage, once the crop has reached maturity and the colour has turned from green to brown the crop will no longer need irrigation water. According to them if the situation didn’t improve people will face shortage of wheat and situation is alarming.

When contacted district Agriculture officer Khanewal, said wheat sowing area in district Khanewal was 4,78,000 acre and they expected 38 to 40 mounds per acre crop production in district. He said they were aware of rust disease and trying to control it and water supply in canals was not in their control .He was of the view that agriculture department convinced farmers to use certified seed but most of them were using their own seed due to price difference.