Coronavirus (COVID-19): Saroj Kumar, a farmer from Madhubani’s Pandaul with three bighas of land, is in a fix if he should wait for the lockdown to end to be able to sow high quality maize seeds in his field or go ahead with the local inferior variety for the kharif season.
Asking why rules have not been relaxed to enable farmers to go out for agricultural purposes, he said, “Transportation is not allowed during lockdown.. most maize companies are finding it difficult to supply seeds.”
Sudhir Yadav, a farmer from Khagaria’s Beldaur, said he may switch to soyabean because of the delay in maize seeds. “I cannot leave my plot barren,” he said.
Farmers in 11 districts, wanting to sow maize for the kharif season have not been able to sow high quality seeds as 35 firms and dealers are not being able to supply seeds. The yield with good quality seed is about 40-45 quintal per bigha as against 30 quintal with inferior variety.
Amar Kothari, a dealer with Kanhaiya Trading Company in Khagaria, said, “Though I have been able to get maize for kharif season with some difficulty, farmers are not being able to reach us… They will have to delay sowing of good quality maize seed or go ahead with any local variety available at village level.”
Deepak Kumar, Bihar manager for Manjira Seeds, said, “Some 35 companies, including us, are in high quality seed supply business. But our movement is restricted. We hope relaxation also covers seed supply transportation.”
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