The Supreme Court on Wednesday ordered incentives for small and marginal farmers who shun stubble-burning, directing that Rs 100 per quintal be given to farmers for handling crop residue of non-basmati rice.
The incentive will be given to farmers of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh.The bench comprising Justices Arun Mishra and Deepak Gupta said that punishing the farmers for stubble burning is not the ultimate solution, what is important is to provide them the basic facilities and resources.
The apex court has directed the state governments to provide machines on a hiring basis and also operational expenses for hiring these machines to small and marginal farmers.
Hailing agriculture as the backbone of the country, the apex court said that the interest of small and marginal farmers must be protected.
The decision comes after the top court took cognizance of the matter of stubble burning in Punjab and Haryana and other meteorological factors pushing Delhi's air quality level down to the 'very poor' category.The apex court asked the Punjab and Haryana government to ensure that stubble is not burned in the future.Slamming the Punjab government, Justice Mishra said, "Why was the government not ready in advance? It seems no steps are taken throughout the year."
The court said that nobody would be spared if they are found violating the rules and regulations.
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