‘Officials selling uncertified groundnut seeds to farmers’

Staff Correspondent

They are issuing fake receipts to farmers, says Shivappa Nayak

Chitradurga: The distribution of groundnut seeds appears to be taking a controversial turn over the alleged involvement of officials of the Agricultural Department in selling uncertified seeds to farmers at exorbitant price.

The allegation was made by Shivappa Nayak, chairman of the standing committee on agriculture of Chitradurga Zilla Panchayat, here on Wednesday.

Mr. Nayak told The Hindu that an official of the department was selling uncertified seeds at exorbitant price with the help of some private companies and issuing “fake” receipts to farmers.

He said that in case of failure of crop, the farmers would not be able to seek action against the officials of the department since the seeds were manufactured by some “fake” company.

The Government has fixed the subsidy of 50 per cent on the market price of Rs. 3,500 a quintal of groundnut seeds. Mr. Nayak alleged that the officials were selling it for Rs. 2,500 a quintal.

He said that villagers had complained to him that the officials were storing the seeds at Dharampura distribution centre in Hiriyur taluk. Mr. Nayak said that three officials at the farmers contact centre of Dharamapura had failed to distribute seeds to 1,600 farmers belonging to 41 villages.

The seeds were also in short supply as the centre had received only one load of groundnut seeds, 40 quintals of sunflower seeds and 71 quintals of paddy seeds, Mr. Nayak said.

The officials of Chalkere contact centre are reported to have lowered the price of groundnut seeds from Rs. 2,500 to Rs. 1,800 a quintal following pressure from the members of the Karnataka Rajya Riata Sangha on Wednesday.

However, the officials of the department were not available for comments.

They are issuing fake receipts to farmers, says Shivappa Nayak

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