GUWAHATI, Nov 5 - Even as the rabi crop season has already started in the State, there has been a delay in supply of inputs, including seeds, to the farmers from the State government.
Official sources told The Assam Tribune on Fridy that November is the month when sowing for most rabi crops should be over.
�However, there is a delay on the part of the Agriculture department in supply of inputs, including seeds, to the districts. This does not augur well for the farm sector as rabi crops are the major source of income for farmers of the State,� said an official on the condition of anonymity.
He added that the Assam Agriculture Service Officers Association (AASOA) has already approached the State government in this regard.
The Association has sent an official letter to the Commissioner and Secretary, Agriculture Department, Government of Assam.
In the letter sent by Rajib Kumar Bhuyan, general secretary of AASOA, it has been mentioned that the seeds of different rabi crops likely to be distributed among farmers should reach all the districts before onset of the crop season to ensure proper farm planning on the part of the farmers and for proper schematic implementation by the department.
�But this time rabi season has already started and for most of the rabi crops, sowing ends by November 15. Therefore, inputs under different schemes must be supplied to the districts within seven days so that inputs reach the farmers at least some days before last sowing time. As seed is the primary input for crop production, supply agency should be directed to adhere to the qualitative aspects, else they may be tried under appropriate laws for breach of trust...,� said the letter.
It added, �The inputs supply for a particular scheme should be followed in proper sequence, e.g. chemicals and fertilizers should be made available to the farmers along with the seeds. It would ensure the proper utilization of the supplied inputs.�
AASOA has also expressed concern about the extension of sowing time of different crops as happened in previous years which leads to difficulties in execution of the schemes at the field level.
�The farming community of Assam strictly follow the crop calendar specific to their situation and hence the extension of sowing time leaves very little space for the departmentally supplied seeds,� the Association said in the letter, adding that such extension of sowing time should not be allowed under any circumstance.