Customised storehouses to stock fertilisers, seeds and foodgrains separately will be ready at Parsudih near Jamshedpur by July, fulfilling a longstanding demand of farmers who are often at the mercy of private dealers while making their periodic purchases.
Krishi Utpadan Bazaar Samiti, a wing of Jharkhand State Agricultural Marketing Board, is taking the initiative at East Singhbhum’s Parsudih where three such storehouses are nearing completion.
Parsudih already has a facility for stocking foodgrains. But, the new state-of-the-art tin-roofed facilities will have proper ventilation and multiple layers of storage space.
Jharkhand State Agricultural Marketing Board’s managing director U.N. Oraon said that the Parsudih storehouse plan was a part of a larger effort to build similar facilities in all 24 districts of Jharkhand.
| The under-construction storehouses at Parsudih on Tuesday. Picture by Animesh Sengupta
“We plan to start the facilities throughout the state from July. The project is part of the Union government’s Krishi Vikas Yojana. In each district, the storehouses are being built at a cost of Rs 2 crore with the Union government bearing 50 per cent of the cost while the remaining is being borne by Krishi Utpadan Bazaar Samiti,” Oraon told The Telegraph in Ranchi.
Krishi samitis, he explained, were an autonomous body and were empowered to make changes in construction plans depending on their need.
East Singhbhum district agriculture officer Arun Kumar said the storehouses would prove to be a boon for farmers who were left to buy seeds and fertilisers from private agencies in the absence of such facilities in the district.
“Hitherto, there was no space for keeping fertilisers, seeds and grains. As a result, when demand peaked, gullible farmers had to buy them at a premium from private agencies. The storehouses will put an end to this practice,” he said.
Kumar added they were also increasing foodgrain storage capacity. “The fertiliser and seed storehouses will have a capacity of 2,500MT and 1,000MT, respectively, while the one for foodgrains will be about 1,000MT,” said Krishi samiti secretary Ram Vinod Singh.
As of now, each farmer pays Rs 2 per sq feet for storing foodgrain at the existing facility at Parsudih. However, new rates for storing items would be finalised by the sub-divisional officer (rate controller) after construction of the other storehouses are over.
East Singhbhum registers an annual demand of 6,000 quintal seeds and around 10,000 quintal fertilisers especially urea and DAP (di ammonium phosphates).