New Delhi, Dec 16: The ongoing sowing of rabi crop has been affected due to demonetisation as farmers are unable to buy quality seeds and fertiliser amid cash crunch, NCP supremo and former agriculture minister Sharad Pawar today said.
Farmers initially supported the government's move, but later they became "unhappy" due to paucity of new notes.
Addressing Ficci's annual general meeting here, Pawar said the poor implementation of the move is taking away the intended benefits. The NCP chief pointed out that there is not enough cash in village co-operative banks on which farmers heavily depend. "There is very insufficient currency, money is not available to farmers.
The approach of the Government of India, particularly after demonetisation, is something different towards cooperative banks," he said. "This will definitely impact the rabi sowing. If farmers are not able to purchase quality seeds and fertilizers, it will affect sowing," he noted. On November 8, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had announced withdrawal of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes.
On farmers' demand, the government later allowed purchase of seeds using old Rs 500 currency from central and state-owned seed companies as well as ICAR and agriculture varsities. The government has asked fertiliser companies to sell soil nutrients to farmers on a credit basis.