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Monday, May 20, 2024

Rice mill owners behind farmers’ protests – Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage

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Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage yesterday said that rice mill owners are behind the protests organized by the farmers in Polonnaruwa demanding chemical fertilizer for paddy cultivation.

He said that the farmers in the Polonnaruwa district are staging a series of protests in an organized manner at a time when paddy cultivation in many other districts has already commenced.

Aluthgamage alleged that those involved in protests in Polonnaruwa are funded by the rice mill owners.

The Minister said that the Indian Air Force has agreed to airlift the Nano Nitrogen Liquid requirement to the country as bringing them by ship will take time.

He said Cabinet approval has been obtained for the import of a quantity of pesticide to avert damage caused to the harvest by disease.

Addressing an event to give away seeds and agri implements to the families under the Saubhagya Home Gardening Project at Gannoruwa, the Minister said that over 800,000 acres will be brought under paddy cultivation for the Maha season by end of this month. “Paddy has been cultivated in an area in extent of over 244,000 hectares using organic fertilizer while another 500,000 hectares of land is to be brought under paddy cultivation using organic fertilizer soon,” he said.

Farmers in Ampara, Batticaloa, Trincomalee and Anuradhapura Districts have already started paddy cultivation for the Maha season.

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