Farmers of eight districts under Rangpur division are apprehensive as sale of low quality and spurious Boro paddy seed is going on unabated at the beginning of seed sowing season.
According to sources a section of unscrupulous paddy seed traders are deceiving the farmers by selling substandard Boro paddy seeds in different markets under the region and as a result production of Boro may decline during the upcoming season, farmers apprehended.
Farmers alleged that they are confused over the output of the adulterated seeds. Since supply of quality seed is meagre and expensive farmers are forced to purchase mostly low quality seeds from other sources.
Visiting different areas of the region this FE correspondent found that Boro seeds selling plentifully which were kept in colourful bags in the name of different companies.
Sources of Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) Rangpur said that DAE has set a target to bring 7,81000 hectares of land in eight districts under the division. The districts are Rangpur, Nilphamari, Kurigram, Gaibandha, Lalmonirhat, Dinajpur,Thakurgaon and Panchagarh.
The growers have already begun preparing Boro seedbeds with much enthusiasm in different areas just after completing harvest of Aman paddy.
It is learnt that there are a limited number of companies in the region which have legal certificates for selling seeds of paddy but more than 50 companies are marketing substandard seeds by using various kinds of labels.
Many farmers said that they have already prepared their seedbeds and at present they are preparing for the Boro cultivation with much apprehension. Many of them are worried about the productivity of the seeds which they have sown in the seedbeds.
Nazrul Mia, a farmer of Nazirdaho village in Kawnia upazila in Rangpur told the FE that last year he faced same difficulty during preparing seedbeds, this year he as well as many farmers of his area are concerned about the quality of paddy seed, he added.
Department of Agriculture Extension (DAE) Rangpur, official sources said that the authorities are very strict in this regard. There are fertiliser and seed monitoring committee in each district of the division to prevent the sale of spurious and sub-standard seeds and fertiliser. Stern action will be taken against the culprits who are involved in such illegal activities, sources added.