Farmers in five talukas of Pune district are getting diesel right at their farm gates, or in their villages. The project is being coordinated by the Pune Zilla Parishad, and is slated to the first-of-its-kind in the state. It was kicked off on May 4.
ZP CEO Ayush Prasad on Sunday said the project is aimed at ensuring that farmers do not have to run around during this critical time in search of fuel. “Petrol pumps are located at quite a distance from the farms. A farmer needs petrol to run tractors, pumps, generators and other machinery. It is not possible for them to travel, especially at a time when travelling from one place to another is prohibited. Therefore, we have decided to…provide them with fuel at their farm gates, or their village itself,” he said.
Prasad said farmers in some parts of the district are in the midst of the sowing season. “They cannot be expected to travel all over to get fuel. The concept has considerably eased their travails…” he said, adding that the initiative has started in five talukas of Pune district.
Pune Zilla Parishad has tied up with Repos Energy, a door-to-door diesel delivery start-up to provide fuel to farmers. BPCL is providing the fuel to the startup, which then reaches out to the farmers, Prasad said. ZP plays the role of the coordinator and the facilitator, he added.
“The concept was conceived by the Ministry of Petroleum…and we decided to take the initiative to provide diesel to the agriculture sector,” said Chetan Walunj, co-founder of Repos Energy.
“The decision was made during a meeting held with Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, with the aim to restart the rural economy in the backdrop of the lockdown,” he said.
Aditi Bhosale Walunj, co-founder of Repos Energy, said fuel will be delivered through mobile fuel tankers called Repos Mobile Petrol Pumps (RMPP). “The vehicles will collect the diesel from a depot and directly be provided to the farmers.” She added that appointed franchises will ensure timely delivery. So far, over 500 farmers have received fuel in their own villages, she said.