Union Minister of State for Shipping (Independent Charge) and Chemical & Fertilizers, Mansukh Mandaviya convened a review meeting in Jammu recently on the supply and availability of fertilisers in Jammu and Kashmir. The minister said that avenues would be explored to set up storage facilities for fertilisers, to create a buffer stock and ensure no shortages occur during peak demand seasons.
Mandaviya was also apprised of the problems being faced in the fertiliser movement in the state, the need for augmenting current infrastructure including need for opening of additional rake points, to which he said that the demand would be taken into consideration.
The minister also asked the fertiliser supplying companies to ensure timely stocking of fertilisers particularly in the valley in view of the closure of Jammu–Srinagar National Highway during winter and inclement weather conditions.
Mandaviya directed officers of the State Agriculture Production Department and the fertiliser supplying companies to adhere to the guidelines and deadlines to bring transparency in the fertiliser business and to ensure timely supply of quality fertilisers to the farmers. He asked to monitor the correct data entry regarding fertiliser stocks and sale records by the wholesalers and retailers in their respective areas.
Stressing on the importance of inculcating sustainable and organic agricultural practices in farmers, the minister said that indiscriminate and injudicious use of chemical fertilisers is harmful for the health of humans as well as animals. It is essential that government actively supports farmers to shift to organic practices that will not only yield healthy crop but also help improve structure and quality of the soil and increase its ability to hold water and nutrients.
For this, Mandaviya asked the department to actively promote use of organic/bio-fertilizers in the state. He also asked the department to engage with agriculture experts to identify sustainable ways for adoption of need-based technology in the farm sector.
The meeting was attended by senior officers of State Agriculture Production Department and the fertiliser supplying companies.