Haryana’s Krishak Upahar Yojana: Farmers waiting for prizes govt announced last year

Neeraj Mohan,Karnal: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government has failed to fulfil its promise concerning

the ‘Krishak Upahar Yojana’, which was announced to promote crop diversification and giving a fillip to the staterun mandis, since there is no clarity if it will provide the prizes under the scheme at all.
Under the scheme, launched during the last kharif procurement season, annual prizes worth Rs 12 crore were promised to farmers for bringing their produce such as mustard, basmati rice, cotton, guar and millet with a minimum value of Rs 5,000 to the state’s mandis.
The scheme will be applicable only to private procurement of crops other than those purchased at the minimum support price (MSP) fixed by the government.
It was announced that a total of 32,072 prizes, including 84 tractors, 188 motorcycles, 872 cultivators, 608 laptops and 11,020 spray pumps among other items, would be given to the farmers after a draw in all districts.
But almost a year has passed since and there is no clarity about this year’s draws.
Officials in the Haryana Agriculture Marketing Board are not sure whether the scheme will continue or not as the coupons were not given during the ongoing kharif procurement.
“I have 40 coupons as I sold Rs 2 lakh wheat in a grain market, but we don’t know when the draw will be held,” said Krishan Kumar, a farmer from Radaur in Yamunanagar district.
“There are several other farmers who don’t know when they will declare the draw,” he said.At the time of the launch of the scheme in October last year, state agriculture minister OP Dhankar had said the farmers selling produce with minimum value of Rs 5,000 would be given a coupon as per the sale of produce mentioned in their J-form, which would be considered as their lottery number.
Earlier, the state government had announced to declare the draws.
J Ganesan, chief administrator, Haryana State Agriculture Marketing Board, said, “The declaration of the draws is under process and tenders will be allotted for the distribution of prizes.”
Whether the awards will be declared for the ongoing season, also he said, “There is no planning about it yet.”