BHAKTAPUR, June 24: Like in previous years, farmers in Bhaktapur will be facing dearth of chemical fertilizers this monsoon as well.
As the season for paddy plantation begins, the district is facing lack of supply of urea, which is useful for the crop.
Farmers in the district have to depend on rain water for irrigation. There has already been adequate rain this year and they are waiting to plant paddy, but lack of fertilizers has been preventing them from doing so. There is no formal irrigation facility in the entire district.
Ram Bhakta Dhaubanjar, a farmer, said that the government doesn't show any concern on this recurring issue.
The locals here plant paddy mostly for their own consumption rather than commercial sale.
Apart from commercial suppliers, local cooperative organizations distribute fertilizers to farmers here every year. However, they too have been unable to distribute this year due to lack of fertilizers. Locals say these cooperative organizations give priority to their own members when there is lack of fertilizers. Municipalities in the district had distributed seeds to farmers for paddy plantation last month.
According to Bikal Prajapati, former central secretary of Nepal Revolutionary Farmers' Association, even half of the required quantity of fertilizers is not available this year.
Locals claim that the government has helped creating scarcity of fertilizers because of concerned officials' greed for commission and kickbacks.
There are four municipalities in Bhaktapur, and there is no rural municipality here. As core areas of Bhaktapur and Madhyapur Thimi municipalities do not have space for farming because of human settlement, the other newly-formed municipalities have lots of land for farming.