CHANDIGARH, NOVEMBER 23: Former union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal today asked the Central and Punjab governments to rush fertilizers, particularly urea, to the State immediately saying any further delay in supply of urea to farmers could have catastrophic results and lead to a fifteen per cent decline in wheat yield.
In a statement here, Harsimrat Badal said the first application of urea was given to the wheat crop in mid-November to ensure high yield. “The time is passing by and there is no certainty of farmers receiving the required urea supply of eight lakh tonnes soon with train services to resume tomorrow. It is unfortunate that the Congress government has been caught napping with chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh not making any attempt to ensure supply of urea by road from nearby areas. Urea is available at the NFL plant in Panipat and could have easily been transported by road to parts of Punjab but the Congress government did not take any initiative. Now the chief minister must hold talks with the centre and ensure urea is supplied to the State on top priority in the next one week itself to ensure the wheat crop is not adversely affected. The State should also make arrangements for supplies from neighbouring States by road”.
The Bathinda mp said the complete lack of any initiative by the Congress government to ensure supply of urea to farmers had already resulted in huge losses to them. “Farmers have been forced to purchase urea at higher rates from Haryana and Rajasthan”. She said whatever limited supply of urea was being made from the NFL plants at Bathinda and Ropar had also been stopped as it had exhausted its quota of supply for Punjab. She said cooperative societies had already distributed 50,000 tonnes of urea and did not have any more stock pending with them.
Keeping all these issues in mind, Mrs Harsimrat Badal asked the chief minister to take up the issue of urgent transport of urea and other needed fertilizer to Punjab on an emergency basis with the Prime Minister. She said the chief minister had already failed in conveying to the centre that the rail tracks had been cleared by the farmer organizations more than two weeks back. “Now there should not be any further delay in supply of fertilizer to Punjab”.
Badal said the central government should also do its utmost to ensure farmers of Punjab did not suffer for want of urea. “Farmers should not get an impression that they are being victimized for rising up against the central farm laws”, she said while requesting the union government to resolve all the grievances of farmers at the earliest. “The union government should favourably consider the demand of farmers to ensure assured government purchase of food grains at minimum support price”, she added.