Dr. Muhammad Azeem Khan, Chairman PARC visited Gujranwala area along with a team of rice experts, agricultural engineers and social scientists from PARC/NARC and hold a formal meeting with private sector entrepreneurs and progressive farmers promoting mechanical sowing of the rice crop.
He emphasized that mechanical sowing of the crop has clear advantage over other sowing methods in terms of timely sowing of the crop, saving of manual labour, keeping recommended level of plants per unit area, increase in productivity of the crop by at least 10-15% and saving of precious resources for profitable farming.
He expressed that farmers need skill to raise mat nursery and then mechanically transplant it. He suggested rice experts from PARC to demonstrate mechanical sowing of the crop along with direct sowing and conventional flat sowing/ manual transplanting in current Kharif season.
He stressed them to acquire knowledge about best practices of these sowing techniques and document practical knowledge after planting trials of these techniques at multiple sites with different replications about varieties, sowing time and input use etc.
He reiterated that this well help Crop SciencesInstitute, PARC-NARC; National Coordinator Rice, PARC, and Rice Program Kala Shah Kaku to redesign their research plan and efforts to enhance productivity of the rice and wheat crops in the rice-wheat cropping zone in particular and other major crops in general. He stated that this will further help for crop diversification in the country, accelerate import substitution for oil seeds and pulses and result in saving of precious foreign exchange.