H.S. NARASIMHA KUMAR
Framers are not reaping the benefits of reduction in prices of key fertilizers in the district though the Union government had announced a cut in their prices recently. Reason: most of the fertilizer dealers and societies continue to sell fertilizers at old rates.
The Union government had announced reduction in prices of fertilizers, including Diammonium Phosphate (DAP), Muriate of Potash (MOP) and Nitrogen Phosphate and Potash Composition (NPK) and had instructed the dealers to sell according to the revised rates. Hosuru Kumar, general secretary of the Karnataka Rajya Raitha Sangha, Hoskote Basavaraj, farmer leader and several other farmers have alleged that the dealers have not reduced the rates of fertilizers and continue to sell them at old rates.
The district administration has also failed to warn the dealers and societies, they added. Meanwhile, several dealers told The Hindu that they have stocked thousands of tonnes of fertilizers for this Khariff season. They said that if they sell the stock at new rates, then they would incur losses. If the government compensates for the loss, then they are ready to sell at new prices, they said.
Joint Director, Agriculture Department, M. Mahanteshappa told The Hindu that the department has already directed its officials to check the documents of fertilizer dealers and societies randomly and ascertain whether they are selling the new stock at old rates.
“Stringent action would be taken against those dealers who sell the new stock at old rates,” he said, adding that the dealers and societies have been asked to display the price of each fertilizer in front of their shops.
“Their licences would be cancelled if they sell fertilizers at a higher price,” he said.