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Fertilizer Shortage: Manipur farmers stages sit-in protest

First Published: 23rd August, 2022 17:44 IST

Chief Minister N Biren had reportedly assured that the fertilizers will be transported within the next few days as connectivity has been restored.

As fertilizer shortage grips Manipur, farmers are staging protests instead of working in the fields.
Farmers under Potshangbam Zilla Parishad staged a sit-in protest today at Khonghampat in Imphal West pressing the government to provide requisite fertilizers, especially urea before the Kharif season ends.

They raised concerns that failure to provide the fertilizers timely will adversely affect the harvest.
Farmers of the Bishnupur district have also warned of imposing a 48-hr bandh along Tiddim Road if the necessary fertilizer is not made available to them by August 25.

Earlier, over 15,000 bags of fertilizers were lying at the Jiribam Railway station, as according to the government, transportation was not possible due to the breaking down of the Irang bridge.

Chief Minister N Biren had reportedly assured that the fertilizers will be transported within the next few days as connectivity has been restored.

When Northeast Live had earlier asked about the shortage of fertilizer, CM Biren did not give a detailed explanation but stated that the government is “almost” solving the fertilizer crisis.
Meanwhile, farmers suspect that the fertilizer scarcity is being caused by black marketing and the diversion of urea for use in poppy cultivation.

In an exclusive conversation with the Northeast Live on the sidelines of the protest at Khonghampat, the president of ‘Loumee Sinmee Apun Lup’, a farmers’ body, Mutum Churamani expressed suspicion about whether urea is being diverted for poppy cultivation.

The farmer leader pointed out that the area of cultivable land has reduced since 2014 while the allocated quantity of urea and the demand placed by the state government is on the rise over the years. He further said that the cultivation of poppies in the hill areas has exponentially grown over the past few years.

Interestingly, Chief Minister N Biren yesterday chaired a meeting with top police officials to effectively deal with drugs related issues.

When asked about the meeting, he said that he had instructed the police officials to visit poppy cultivation areas in the wake of the destruction of farmhouses and seeds used in poppy cultivation in the Henglep constituency a few days ago.

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