Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): After a cultivator committed suicide over shortage of fertiliser, the furious farmers blocked Sagar-Damoh state highway in Damoh district on Saturday. However, ADM Nathuram Gound denied that protest was due to fertiliser shortage.
In the last fortnight, farmers were moving from pillar to post for fertiliser in Damoh district but when they did not get it, they blocked the state highway. Administrative and police officials reached the spot and pacified the matter. Heavy police force was deployed. Several districts have been reeling under severe fertiliser crisis, particularly Bhind, Morena, Gwalior, Chambal and Bundelkhand regions.
Almost all 3,400 cooperative societies across the state are running out of stock. As against 3,48,000 tons of urea lifted by the farmers in October last year, this year 3,18,000 tons have been lifted, said an official. Last year, till the end of October, 2,78,000 tons of DAP was purchased by farmers. This year, the figure stood at 2,31,000 tons.
Earlier, angry farmers had blocked the national highway in Bhind district and took away fertiliser sacks in Morena district. Fertiliser was distributed under police protection in Sheopur district. Ever since the crisis, news and photographs of farmers sleeping outside fertiliser distribution centres and women and girls waiting in queues have appeared in newspapers and on social media.
Besides, a 44-year-old farmer had committed suicide. A resident of Ashoknagar district, he ended life after he was unable to get fertiliser from distribution centres.
Patharia (Damoh) MLA Ram Bai Govind Singh said he assured farmers of an early solution. Traders are selling fertilisers at Rs 1800 per sack instead of Rs 1200 per sack, which is MRP. “Farmers are moving from pillar to post. I talked to officials to raid traders but officials told me that traders have their own links, so they got fertilisers. I pacified farmers who were furious and blocked road at 3-Gulli, Damoh on Damoh-Sagar state highway,” he added.
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