Chitwan farmers finally receive relief money after fake paddy seeds devastate harvestFarmers in Chitwan incurred a loss of Rs 119.48 million in lost harvest due to fake Garima seeds.
Farmers are finally receiving relief money after losing their harvest to fake Garima paddy seeds which they had cultivated in good faith.
Krishna Prasad Aryal of Kathar Kharkhutte, Khairhar municipality-10 in east Chitwan received Rs 9,219 in relief money after his crop grown on 15 kathas of land did not bear any grain. He said that the amount only covers the cost of ploughing the field.
He decided to continue planting Garima paddy seeds, an Indian hybrid, after having a good harvest in previous years. The Garima paddy variety is popular among farmers as it produces a large quantity of grain and ripens quickly. But he was sold fake Garima paddy seeds which failed to bear any grain.
"I just took it. If justice is to be given to the farmers, the government should make the company provide proper compensation," said Aryal. According to Rajan Dhakal, head of Agriculture Knowledge Center Chitwan, 2,652 farmers planted Garima paddy on nearly 1,000 bighas of land in six local levels in Chitwan except in Ichhyakamana Rural Municipality.
Dhakal said that the distribution of relief money provided by the federal government has started at the local level in Chitwan. Rapti Municipality started distributing the relief money by issuing notice on April 11. Most of the Garima paddy plantation was done in Rapti municipality. The federal government has provided Rs 10.23 million to the local level of Chitwan to provide relief money to farmers.
According to the Agriculture Knowledge Centre, farmers in Chitwan incurred a loss of Rs 119.48 million in lost harvest due to fake Garima seeds. So far, farmers have only received Rs 10 million in relief money.
Sunrise Agriculture Research Centre of Dang is the sole importer of Garima paddy seed from India. According to the centre, Prashant Agrovet sold Garima paddy seeds in Chitwan and neighbouring districts. Garima paddy seed started being imported in 2013. In Chitwan alone, 11,704 kg of Garima paddy seed was planted last year.