It is ridiculous for the state government to be talking up huge figures of subsidised fertiliser when it does not even know how many farmers there are in Meghalaya, Congress Party candidate for Mawryngkneng, Esron Marwein has said.
Marwein filed his nomination papers at the Deputy Commissioner’s office here yesterday. He had contested the Mawryngkneng by-election in 2021 but scraped together only 485 votes as an independent.
It was under the old Congress government that the state ditched subsidies for fertiliser as it attempted to go down the organic path. That policy was only reversed last year as the yields from organic agriculture were insufficient.
Marwein said that everyone wants organic farming but it should not come abruptly like it happened in 2014.
He also decried the “politicisation” of the fertiliser subsidy issue, adding that the government does not possess statistics as to the number of farmers in the state.
“Now you are saying that tonnes of urea will be made available again for farmers but on what grounds are you bringing the subsidies when you don’t even have a statistic of the farmers? Whom will you give?” he asked.
Meanwhile, Marwein said there is a need for a policy to lay out government service delivery norms.
“Everywhere we go time is stolen from us. Be it for certificates, licences, schemes, etc it is always delayed and you have to wait for months and years with no specific timing and we immediately need a time-bound policy,” Marwein said, adding that such a policy will also decrease bribery.
He further stressed on the need for a policy that will mandate any company looking to set up operations in Meghalaya to hire 60 percent of its workforce from the state itself.
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