CPI (M) demands 90%subsidy on groundnut seeds

‘Only 2 lakh quintals of seed procured so far against the projected demand of 4 lakh quintals’ 4

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) has demanded that the State government must announce a subsidy of 90% on groundnut seeds to be distributed among the farmers in Anantapur district.

Having suffered from severe crop loss and low yield due to excess rainfall in the monsoon season last year, many farmers now do not have adequate seed stock to sow or borrow from the fellow ryots. The Agriculture Department must expedite the procurement of groundnut seeds and process them in time for the kharif season, said CPI (M) district secretary V. Rambhupal.

“The Agriculture Department has so far procured only 2 lakh quintals of seed against the projected demand of 4 lakh quintals for this season,” Mr. Rambhupal told the media here on Thursday.

Party district committee member R. Chandrasekhar Reddy demanded the distribution of seeds through village secretariats based on the 1-B patta documents held by the farmers, not through the ‘biometric’ system as it could lead to further spread of coronavirus.

Sufficient quantity to cover the seed requirement at least up to 5 acres of landholding should be supplied on subsidy as the farmers had lost their investments in 14 lakh acres of groundnut crop last year and a majority of them were yet to receive compensation. The subsidy should be enhanced to 90%, said Mr. Chandrasekhar.

Last year, the distribution of groundnut seeds began on May 18 despite COVID19, but this year no announcement has been made yet on the subsidy or the date from which the supply would begin at Ruthu Bharosa Kendras.

RBI rule on loan

The CPI(M) leaders also took exception to the RBI rule of mortgaging land documents if farmers need a loan of more than ₹1.6 lakh. Many farmers have loans in their names more than that amount, and they would be asked to repay the entire amount before fresh loans were sanctioned, they said.

Last year, they said, farmers were promised 120 kgs of seeds at ₹47.10 per kg, but in view of the huge demand, it was restricted to 90 kgs at subsidised price. The open market price was between ₹65 and ₹68 a kg, they added.

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