New Delhi: The Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI) sprayed the “Pusa De-composer” solution last month in order to prevent stubble burning in Delhi. Every year, crop burning in the winter months causes environmental issues and pollution in the entire north India stretch from Punjab to Bihar. The IARI, under the leadership of Principal Scientist Livleen Shukla and her research fellow, has developed decomposer capsules which help to hasten the process of decomposition of stubble.

Shukla told The Sunday Guardian, “We started working on this decomposer in 2010. At that time, the issue of crop burning and pollution was not as serious as it is now. After much research and trial runs, we came up with these capsules in 2016.” Asked about how the institution came up with the idea, she said, “Every year, a seminar called Recycle of Organe Matter Project is held where agricultural scientists from across India participate. When our turn came in 2015, we showed these capsules in the seminar and the following year, a pilot project was initiated for spraying the capsules on the farm land.”

On how the capsules work, she said, “A farmer has to dissolve the capsule in 5 or 10-litre solution and then spray it on the stubble. It will take 25 days to one month for 90% stubble to decompost.” Principal scientist Shukla further added, “The cost per capsule is Rs 20 and four capsules is equal to one kit. The capsule is already available at a subsidised rate and one kit can help to decompost stubble on 2.5 acres of land.” She further added that over 5,000 kits have been sold across the country, adding, “Maharashtra has acquired a high number of kits from the institute.” She also added that demonstrations of how the capsules work have been shown to farmers from Uttar Pradesh, Haryana and Punjab.