The Punjab Cabinet today agreed to revise the terms and conditions of the Paddy Straw Challenge Fund to find a viable technological solution to combat the menace of paddy straw burning.
The decision was taken by the Council of Ministers at a meeting chaired by Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh here today, an official spokesperson said.
The state government had notified establishment of the Fund for accelerating in-situ degradation of paddy straw vide notification dated September 15, 2017, he said.
The cabinet felt the terms and conditions of the Fund should be easy and simple, allowing a larger number of institutions/individuals offering different technological solutions to participate in the contest, he said.
This move would not only help retain the fertility of the soil but also make environment pollution free, he said.
The USD 1 million dollar Fund is set up by Punjab State Farmers' and Farm Workers' Commission (PSFC) and aimed at seeking appropriate technology for rapid management of paddy straw in the field, from innovators represented by private/public agencies or individuals, he said.
A significant window of opportunity exists for interventions aimed at accelerated in-situ management of paddy straw, he said.
The cabinet also approved the guidelines for the Paddy Straw Challenge, which included proposals to be submitted to the Chairman, PSFC with the contest to be open internationally to individuals/institutes/group/firms.
The application fee for participation in the challenge should be Rs 1.25 lakh per entry, he said.
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