In an unlikely incident, farmers at Jharigaon in Nabarangpur got into a brawl when a huge crowd thronged a Large Area Multipurpose Societies (LAMPS) to purchase fertilisers, on Friday.
The irate farmers ransacked the LAMPS following differences among them over allocation of fertilisers.
Reports said that hundreds of farmers turned up at the LAMPS to purchase Urea as per an earlier announcement. According to the announcement, each farmer was allotted one packet of fertiliser. However, few of the farmers firmly demanded allotment of two packets of fertilisers which triggered differences among them.
Following the incident, the irate farmers ransacked the centre and got into a brawl with the LAMPS operating director.
"Few in the crowd demanded two packets of Urea while some said they are satisfied with one. While heated arguments were on, someone from the crowd came forward and broke the tables and chairs," said Brunda Panka, a farmer.
"The administration is to be blamed for causing such an incident. If they had distributed the Urea packets Panchayat wise, no such incident would have occurred. There are 26 Panchayats under the block and calling farmers from all these Panchayats at one time and at one place is not justified," alleged Brunda.
Later, the Jharigaon Tehsildar, Umerkot SDPO and police reached the spot and tried to pacify the angry farmers.
The Tehsildar also assured the farmers to scale up the quantity of Urea after the stock-flow increased.
"Urea distribution among the farmers was scheduled today and as per the previous orders, each farmer was allotted one sack. However, some farmers demanded more Urea packets which triggered resentment among the crowd hindering the distribution process," said Hrushikesh Ganda, Jharigaon Tehsildar.
"Later on, after discussion with the farmers, the distribution process continued without any issue. Shortage of Urea has pushed the farmers to despair and we are ensuring that every farmer gets at least one sack," he added.
Earlier on August 13, farmers at many places started hitting roads over the scarcity of Urea and closed shops and markets. Following the incident, the District Chief Agriculture Officer had given a written assurance to the farmers to ensure proper supply of Urea in the region.
Scanty rainfall and shortage of Urea continues to pile up worries for the farmers in the State. While some farmers are not getting fertilizer at the LAMPS, some are forced to buy the same at higher prices from private sources. Shortage of Urea along with rainfall deficit has created a double whammy situation for the farming community already reeling under Covid crisis.