Allegations of black marketing of urea are rife in Congress-ruled Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. Interestingly, The Congress-led Union government of PV Narasimha Rao had presided over urea scam in 1996, in which his kin was convicted in 2018.
New Delhi: Ashok Gehlot and Kamal Nath can accuse the Centre as much as they want, but while just a month ago Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh (MP) had more than required supply of urea and within days of the Congress taking over the reins, the two states are grappling with restive farmers upset over undersupply of the fertiliser.
MyNation accessed a letter of appreciation from Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Madhya Pradesh’s chief minister till just some days ago, written to Rao Inderjit Singh, union minister of state for chemicals and fertiliser, expressing his gratitude for providing MP with more than adequate amount of urea to the state. The letter was written on December 5.
“In 2018, you have provided Madhya Pradesh on behalf of the Government of India, 3.70 lakh metric ton urea. Due to your efforts, in November 2018, against the allotted amount of 3.77 lakh tons, Madhya Pradesh received 4.31 lakh metric tons of urea. On behalf of the farmers of the state, I convey my gratitude,” Chouhan wrote in the letter.
Polls are over, Congress is back in the saddle in MP and Rajasthan and the real pro-farmer face of the party stands exposed. The Gehlot and Nath regimes have bared their fangs on farmers, dishing out the pungent taste police lathis as they demand more urea.
While the two chief ministers are busy shifting the blame on to the Centre, centres such as Guna, Raisen, Dewas and Neemuch have witnessed serious clashes between the police and restive farmers who desperately need urea after the first phase of watering the wheat crop.
The million-dollar question is where did urea, which has been in more than sufficient supply in these states, disappear suddenly from these states. Is another fertiliser/urea scam brewing in the country, just as in 1996 under the then Congress government?
Incidentally, the BJP for long has accused Gehlot’s brother of being involved in a fertiliser scam during the UPA rule, alleging that he exported subsidised fertiliser meant for farmers of the country.
In addition, puncturing the narrative that Gehlot and Nath have tried to build against the Centre, the ministry of fertiliser has issued a crisp, data-based rebuttal to their claims.
“For Madhya Pradesh, in the ongoing month of December, against the monthly requirement of 3.50 LMT (lakh metric ton), DoF (department of fertiliser) has issued a supply plan of 3.70 LMT. Against the pro-rata requirement of 2.59 LMT till 23.12.18, 2.38 LMT has already been supplied, as a result of which the availability as on date is 2.75 LMT (including the opening stock of 0.37LMT). Corresponding to the availability figures, the sales are 1.85LMT, hence signifying a comfortable position of urea stocks available at the State level,” a ministry release said.
“For Rajasthan, in the ongoing month of December, against the monthly requirement of 2.70 LMT, DoF has issued a supply plan of 2.89 LMT. Against the pro-rata requirement till 23/12/18 of 2.00 LMT, 2.57 LMT has already been supplied, as a result of which the availability as on date is 2.60 LMT (including the opening stock of 0.03 LMT) and corresponding sales are 2.31 LMT,” the ministry added.
The DoF has also requested the Railway Board to accord overriding priority to urea movement for both the States from the ports.
And more than that, while internal and local distribution and movement of urea, after the Centre has sent it to states, is the responsibility of the state governments, it is highly diversionary of the two Congress regimes to blame the Centre.
This once throws back to the same question: where did the urea go under Congress chief ministers?
Last Updated Dec 26, 2018, 4:59 PM IST