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Fertilizer shortage in districts

Special Correspondent


Scarcity of fertilizer attributed to panic buying

Centre allots another 60,000 tonnes of fertilizer


HYDERABAD: An artificial shortage of fertilizer has cropped up in some districts with farmers sowing more extent of area than last year to take advantage of the good rains in the State. The scarcity is also attributed to panic buying by them.

Expressing concern over this trend, Agriculture Minister N. Raghuveera Reddy asked agriculture officials to ensure proper distribution of fertilizer by fixing weekly and not monthly targets.

Interacting with officials, banks and insurance companies through a videoconference here on Saturday, the Minister said the situation was expected to ease shortly as the Centre had allotted another 60,000 tonnes of fertilizer to the State in addition to 36.5 lakh tonnes for kharif season.

‘Stop diversion'

Mr. Reddy instructed officials to take steps to prevent diversion of fertilizer from the border villages to the neighbouring States of Maharashtra, Karnataka and Orissa where traders were offering higher prices to farmers to attract commodity from Andhra Pradesh. The Minister complained that loans were not being arranged to farmers to meet the full cost of sowing a crop and asked the officials to ensure full-scale loans. They were also directed to organise ‘loan melas' for tenant farmers.

Mr. Reddy announced that the last date for remittance of premium by non-loanees under the crop insurance scheme had been extended up to September 15. On the overall farming operations, he said an extent of 73.7 lakh hectares of land was sown in the State so far as against the normal of 67.34 lakh ha.

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