Maize growers press for action against seed firms
Scores of maize growers from drought-prone mandals of Ardhaveedu and Tarlapadu thronged the Prakasam Bhavan here on Monday pressing for action against some firms for allegedly selling them spurious seeds.
Irate ryots led by Andhra Pradesh Rythu Sangam District Secretary N. Ranga Rao spread corns with poor growth at the Prakasam Bhavan and drew the attention of officials and non-officials to their plight.
After a long wait, they showed their harvested crop with stunted growth to Prakasam Collector G.S.R.K.R. Vijaykumar and poured out their woes.
Responding to their pleas, the Collector telephonically asked the Markapur police to initiate action against the firms. He asked Agriculture E.Narasimhulu to follow up with the Markapur police to ensure relief to the ryots.
The seed companies through their agents encouraged to grow their hybrid Maize in their fields to get over five tonnes of yield per acre, explained APRS Assistant Secretary D.Gopinath.
The firms promised to pay Rs. 45,000 per acre if the yield fell below three tonnes, Seed Farmers Association Ardhaveedu mandal President P.Ranga Reddy said.
Going by the projection made by the firms, the growers had raised maize in 4,000 to 5,000 acres in 50 villages in both the mandals APRS Tarlabadu mandal Secretary B. Appalaswamy.
“We followed the agronomic practices suggested by the firms and ended up spending Rs. 40,000 per acre” explained a farmer M. Anjaneyulu.
Only six to nine quintals of maize could be harvested by the farmers after the toil, lamented another farmer Y.Srinivasa Rao.
“We could get only Rs. 6,000 to Rs. 8,000 per acre”, added yet another farmer M.V.Ramana from Tarlapadu.
“We have come all the way to Ongole as there has been response from local revenue, police and the Agriculture Department officials”, said a peasant S. Srinivasulu from Narayanpalle.