Fodder shortage is likely to become acute in drought-hit Mandya district in the coming months. As fodder has been in short supply for the past several months, the prices have spiralled forcing farmers to sell their cattle to slaughterhouses.
Speaking to The Hindu, Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (KRRS) leader Shambhunahalli Suresh said: “Fodder shortage has forced a large number of farmers to sell their cattle at throwaway prices to slaughterhouses. Farmers cannot afford thousands of rupees to buy haystacks and other essential commodities. So they are selling their cattle.”
In an effort to solve the problem, the district administration had launched a drive to collect fodder from donors. “The fodder scarcity might hit the district in the coming days. Hence, we have decided to overcome fodder shortage by approaching donors,” Dr. B.K. Mamatha, Mandya tahsildar, told The Hindu here on Thursday. In fact, 15 tonnes of fodder was collected from philanthropists in Mandya taluk and from other taluks the same quantity was collected. But, the drive has been suspended in view of the model code of conduct for Assembly polls.
Fodder shortage may affect the dairy industry.
Last year also the district had faced acute shortage of fodder and had prompted the district administration to establish ‘goshalas’ (cattle sheds) at different parts of Mandya. Meanwhile, considering the shortage, the district administration has issued an order banning transport of fodder from the district.
A KRRS leader urged the police to book criminal cases against the people who illegally transport cattle to other States.
The police should set up check-posts on various highways in the district besides intensifying the night patrolling, he said.
An official of the Animal Husbandry Department said officials have been instructed to step up measures to tackle fodder shortage that is likely to become more acute in the next few months.