Sowing of kharif rice, oilseeds improves

The cultivation of kharif rice, sugarcane and oilseeds has improved over the last week, but that of pulses and coarse cereals is lagging due to deficient rain in parts of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra.

As per the data released by the Ministry of Agriculture here on Friday, the area under rice cultivation is 260.36 lakh hectares against 244.79 lakh hectares sown this time last year. Sown area has increased in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Bihar, West Bengal and Assam. However, it is lower in Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Odisha, Gujarat, Haryana and Punjabdue to insufficient rain.

In the case of pulses, the sown area is lower by 9.31 lakh hectares at 81 lakh hectares due to erratic monsoon in parts of Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh.

The area under coarse cereals is reported to be lower by 18.06 lakh hectares at 163.38 lakh hectares compared to 181.44 lakh hectares cultivated last year. The shortfall has occurred due to lesser area under coarse cereals in Uttar Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Haryana, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and West Bengal. The sowing is higher in Madhya Pradesh and Uttarakhand this season.

Compared to last year, the area under oilseeds is 4.85 lakh hectares, higher than last year in the corresponding period, mainly on account of higher coverage under soyabean, sesamum and castor. The area under groundnut and sunflower, however, remains lower than last year. The total area under oilseeds has improved in the last week to 157.9 lakh hectares compared to 153.06 lakh hectares in the corresponding period last year.

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