SAD asks Centre to provide DAP, NPK fertilisers at subsidised rates

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Chandigarh, May 19 (PTI) The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Wednesday urged the central government to provide diammonium phosphate (DAP) and nitrogen phosphorus potash (NPK) fertilisers to farmers at subsidised rates.

Hikes in the range of 50-60 per cent in the rates of these fertilisers will 'break the back of the farmers and force them into a debt trap', the party said.

'Farming is already becoming un-remunerative. The unprecedented hike in the rates of fertilisers will put an unbearable burden on the farmers of the state, who will face a cumulative loss of Rs 1,100 crore due to the increase,' SAD Kisan wing president Sikander Singh Maluka said in a statement here.

The move will also have a long-term effect on the agrarian economy and can prove to be devastating for peasantry, he added.

Demanding that the government take back the hefty increase of Rs 700 per bag in case of DAP and Rs 400 to Rs 800 per bag in the case of NPK, Maluka said the hike would severely affect wheat, paddy, maize, potato and sugarcane farmers.

Potato farmers use as much as four bags of DAP per acre, while sugarcane farmers use three bags per acre, he added.

Claiming that there was a growing feeling amongst the peasantry that the central government was deliberately discriminating against farmers and wanted to teach them a lesson for their agitation against the three agricultural laws, Maluka said, 'The Centre should stop this vendetta exercise.' PTI VSD IJT IJT