Chandigarh: Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal Wednesday warned if uninterrupted supply of coal was not ensured for the state, it could lead to a food crisis as paddy plantation will be severely affected.
Badal met union Railway Minister D.V. Sadananda Gowda in New Delhi Wednesday to seek regular supply of coal for Punjab as enough coal was not being transported to the state through rail wagons.
He said Punjab should get uninterrupted coal supply from the enhanced coal allocation quota for the state so that adequate power could be generated in thermal plants for electricity supply to the farming sector.
With the monsoon rains not hitting Punjab in a big way, farmers have to depend for irrigation on tubewells.
Badal also urged him to ensure smooth and uninterrupted transplantation of paddy in the state.
Badal, accompanied by senior power department officers, told the railway minister that power generation was suffering in Punjab as enough coal was not being transported to the state by railways.
Punjab is a major producer of paddy and the entire transplantation operation could only be sustained by providing uninterrupted power supply to peasantry.
“Halted coal supply would not only hit the paddy season but also lead to a food crisis situation,” Badal said.
Green revolution state Punjab contributes over 50 percent of the food grain to the national kitty though it has just 1.54 percent of the country’s geographical area.