KOHALPUR, March 6: The District Agriculture Development Office (DADO), Banke, has distributed identity cards to 7,055 farmers so far.
The cards were distributed as per the policy and programs introduced by the government in Fiscal Year 2014/2015. The office distributed 4,979 cards in the current fiscal year and 2,076 in the last fiscal year.
According to the government officials, the identity cards will help them to identify real farmers.
A farmer of Belvar-1 said he was very happy to get the farmers identity card. “Now it will be easier for us to get grants provided by the government. Similarly, we can get discounts while buying seeds, fertilizers and agricultural tools,” he said, adding that farmers can easily get the services and facilities provided by the government after receiving the identity card.
The government introduced the policy of distributing identification cards to farmer following complaints that facilities meant for farmers were being misused. Through full-fledged implementation of the program, the government aims at providing required services and grants to the farmers.
Santabir Sunar, a farmer of Bankatuwa-4, said that the identity card will help differentiate farmers from others. “The services provided by the government to farmers are clearly mentioned in the identity card. The government started the program to provide loans to farmers at subsidized interest rates and to provide other required facilities,” Sunar added.
Dhana Bahadur Pun, an agriculture officer with DADO Banke, said that the government plans to distribute around 10,000 cards to farmers in five districts within two years. “Now only the real farmers will get government services meant for farmers. We can easily identify real farmers with the help of identity cards,” Pun added.
According to the office, there are around 65,000 farmers in Banke district. “Every farmer in the district will receive identity card. They will get grants and other facilities announced by the government,” Pun said.
Farmers having annual income of up to Rs 250,000 are categorized as marginalized farmers, while those earning up to Rs 1 million annually as small farmers. Similarly, farmers earning between Rs 1 and 3 million are medium farmers, and Rs 3 and Rs 5 million are big farmers.
Farmers having ID cards get 13 kg of urea, 9 kg of DAP and 4 kg of potassium per kattha of land three times a year from the government. Similarly, they get 50 kilograms of vermicompost and 150 kg of other fertilizers, as well as 1.5 kg of paddy seeds, 3.33 kg of wheat, 66 grams of corn seeds per kattha.