ACCORDING to tests carried out by Soil Research Development Institute (SRDI), nearly 40 per cent of all fertilisers used by farmers are adulterated, as reported in a leading Bangla daily. Unscrupulous businessmen become overly active in adulterating various types of fertiliser during plantation seasons. Mixing of harmful chemical substances degrades fertility of the land and causes serious health issues for humans. Moreover, by applying such contaminated fertilisers, farmers are cheated and production suffers.
So why aren't the various agencies involved with the monitoring of agro-fertilisers being able to curb fertilizer adulteration? It is reported that more than one ruling party MPs are part of the association controlling fertiliser sales in the country; and the association includes many opposition politicians too. That being the case it is little wonder that the job of combating fertiliser adulteration has not been successful, if at all undertaken.
Though the department of agriculture extension along with other agencies regularly test fertilisers available in the market, the fact that SRDI's final report for the fiscal year 2012-13 is yet to be published speaks volumes of the power of vested interests. And why can't the authorities impound shops that sell banned fertilisers? And how do these find their way into the market?
We strongly urge the authorities to take necessary steps to stop this harmful practice by strengthening monitoring and meting out exemplary punishment to those involved – whoever they may be. No syndicate, no matter how well connected, ought to be allowed to play around with our food security.