Farmers’ seeds of discontent put Sundargarh govt dealers role under scanner

Farmers forced to buy seeds at inflated prices after failing to get those at subsidised rates

Published: 20th June 2017 06:09 AM  |   Last Updated: 20th June 2017 06:09 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

ROURKELA: Government-appointed private dealers in Bonai sub-division of Sundargarh district are accused of ‘deliberately’ not maintaining stock of certified seeds to sell private firms’ seeds. Farmers failing to get seeds at subsidised rate are being forced to buy seeds of companies from them at inflated prices.

Sources said certified paddy seeds of different varieties are supplied by the Odisha State Seeds Corporation (OSSC) and distributed to farmers through 13 Large and Multi-Purpose Cooperative Societies (LAMPS) and 15 Government-approved private dealers in the sub-division. The price of certified seed is `2,597 per quintal with subsidy of `997. Registered farmers pay full price during purchase and later, the subsidy amount gets transferred to their bank accounts through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT). Bonai Krushak Sangh (BKS) president Dambrudhar Kishan alleged that the Government-approved private dealers are resorting to irregularities and ‘deliberately’ not maintaining stock of certified seeds of OSSC.

He said timely sowing of seeds remains a top priority for good paddy yields, but with certified seeds not available, beleaguered farmers are ending up buying hybrid and ‘foundation’ seeds from private dealers at higher cost. At the same time, farmers are also losing to get subsidy amount, he claimed, adding that there is lack of monitoring on the part of the administration.

The Agriculture Department targets paddy cultivation on about 46,700 hectares (ha) and non-paddy crops on 20,600 ha. Each registered farmer is entitled to OSSC’s certified paddy seeds for two ha. Usually, farmers with cultivation of certified seeds in a crop season get the crop output from which seeds for next season are kept aside and the surplus seeds are exchanged with other farmers to get different varieties. Hence, farmers usually do not face scarcity of paddy seeds.  But, reality is different, said a farmer of Bonai Loknath Kishan stating that he did not have certified seeds and from a private dealer, he purchased hybrid seeds paying extra cost.

Bonai Agriculture Officer PH Kerketta said no complaint has been received yet about registered private dealers not supplying certified seeds. On specific complaint, stern action would be recommended, he added.

Sources said against 20 kg of certified seeds per acre, only six kg is required in case of the costly hybrid seeds. But hybrid seeds may produce huge yield or fail.

OSSC scheme

H2,597
price of certified seed

H997  
subsidy per quintal

Farmers pay full price during purchase and subsidy amount gets transferred to their bank accounts through DBT

Certified paddy seeds are supplied by OSSC and distributed to farmers through 13 LAMPS and 15 Govt-approved private dealers in Bonai

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