The organisation threatens to stage dharna
The recent rain encouraged farmers to take up sowing of rabi crops Shortage of seeds and fertilizers is posing a problem
Raichur: The Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha (KRRS) has threatened to stage dharna if the Government failed to initiate immediate steps to set right the "irregularities" in distribution of subsidised seeds to farmers and ensure adequate supply of fertilizers for speedy completion of rabi sowing in the district.
Chamarasa Malipatil, vice-president of the State unit of the sangha, told The Hindu on Monday said that farmers in the district had suffered heavy losses owing to the failure of kharif crops. But the recent rain had encouraged them to take up sowing of rabi crops. Shortage of seeds and fertilizers had affected sowing operations in the district, he said.
Mr. Malipatil said that the Government had promised to supply adequate quantities of seeds and fertilizers and also subsidised seeds to small and marginal farmers, during the rabi season.
The sowing of rabi crops had been in progress for the past fifteen days. It was estimated that rabi crops would be cultivated in 3.45 lakh hectares of land in the district, covering mainly shakthiman jowar, jowar, sunflower, safflower and horse gram, for which about 14,000 quintals of seeds were needed. But there were complaints that the shortage of seeds had hit the progress of sowing of rabi crops, especially horse gram and shakthiman jowar, he said.
Mr. Malipatil said that the Agricultural department had assured to provide only about 9,500 quintals of seeds and announced a subsidy on supply of jowar, sunflower and safflower seeds. But no subsidy had been announced for supply of horse gram seeds.
The department had that there was shortage of sunflower and jowar seeds and failed to supply the required quantity of horse gram seeds on which no subsidy was available. It supplied small quantities of subsidized jowar, sunflower and safflower seeds at a price was equivalent to that in the open market.
The situation had forced many to purchase seeds in the open market at higher price and until now, a majority of farmers in the district had completed sowing of sunflower crop. Sowing of jowar, safflower and horsegram crops was in progress. It would go on for another fifteen days.
Mr. Malipatil alleged that traders were hoarding stocks of horse gram seeds and fertilizers and selling them at high prices.