T’malai ryots face urea shortage

Farmers said that the shortage was acute over the last 10 days with cooperative shops saying they had no stocks. “Then how is it that private shops alone are able to sell urea at exorbitant rates,” they asked.
T’malai ryots face urea shortage
Representative Image

TIRUVANNAMALAI: A road blockade staged by farmers, at Elathur village near Kalasapakkam in Tiruvannamalai district, highlighted the acute urea shortage. The short supply is likely to affect farming operations despite irrigation tanks brimming due to recent rain, sources revealed.

Farmers said that the shortage was acute over the last 10 days with cooperative shops saying they had no stocks. “Then how is it that private shops alone are able to sell urea at exorbitant rates,” they asked.

What angered the farmers was that a 45 kg urea bag whose price was around Rs 267 was sold for more than double the price by private shops. “Though we complained to agricultural officials, no official till date conducted enquiries in any shop in Kalasapakkam area,” said CPM farmer leader S Balaraman.

He said private shops sell mixed fertilizer which includes 80 per cent urea, 10 per cent each of sand and fertilizer for as high as Rs 1,350 per bag.”

Tamil Nadu Vivasayigal Sangam youth wing general secretary R Subash when asked about this said, “We face the same issues in Ranipet district also. Here urea is sold for Rs 350 a bag with the rider that farmers have to buy some pesticide which they do not need, if they are to get urea.”

“Though farmers staged a sit in at Tiruvannamalai Agriculture JD’s office a week ago and were promised action, nothing has happened which is what annoys us,” Balaraman added.

Lack of urea could affect farming in the district as Kalasapakkam, Thurinjapuram and Pudupalayam areas. “We have enough water to raise three crops, but that will not help if we do not get enough urea,” Ramalingam of Pudupalayam said.

Agriculture Department officials refused to comment other than to state that the post of Agriculture JD was vacant while Collector B Murugesh could not be reached for comments.

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