KHUDIAN KHAS - The local farmers are worried about the plantation of paddy due to the delay in the monsoon rains and the electricity loadshedding-induced water shortage.According to the growers, a little more delay in monsoon rains could hit the production of rice as nearly every rice-grower is avoiding rice farming, due to its extra water requirement than any other crop. Reportedly, most of them are mulling about alternative crops, which require small amount of water like corn etc, especially during the prevailing worst power loadshedding and high prices of diesel which has even deprived the grower of alterative source of water. Many farmers, who used to plant paddy, delayed their plans for rice crop due to the scarcity of irrigation water. Specially, those farmers who could not afford other resources for irrigation have to wait for rains to irrigate and prepare their fields for rice crop. Mian Murtaza Ali, a farmer from Kot Sheikh Allahdeen village said, “The shortage of water and power has posed really a great threat to the agriculture sector, particularly in the areas which is being fed by rains and other natural sources.” On the contrary, middle class farmers are unable to afford diesel engines as an alternative source for getting water for irrigation due to high prices of the fuel. The farmers have demanded the government to take stock of the worst situation and rationalise the power outages duration in the paddy plantation areas to save the agriculture from total collapse.