Although the Irrigation Department released water from the main reservoirs for the Maha season today (15), farmers in several areas have staged protests.
Farmers from the Magalla Reservoir Project held a protest near the Magalla Reservoir in Nikaweratiya today and the reservoir lock was closed.
Hiru correspondents also said that during protests in many areas, farmers took action to shut off the floodgates.
Meanwhile, several parties, including the Environmental Justice Center, today filed a petition with the Court of Appeals for an order quashing the government’s decision to import organic fertilizers.
Meanwhile, Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage has said protests demanding chemical fertilizers are unnecessary because the government has a policy of not importing chemical fertilizers.
Agriculture Minister Mahindananda Aluthgamage, State Ministry Secretary Shashindra Rajapaksa and Acting Director General of the National Fertilizer Secretariat have been named as defendants in a petition filed today by the Center for Environmental Justice asking annulment of the government’s decision to import organic fertilizer.
The petition calls for criminal charges against all officials responsible for importing organic fertilizers.
The petitioners pointed out that importing organic fertilizers from foreign countries is a complete destruction of the ecosystem and that the viruses contained in these organic fertilizers can cause irreparable damage to the soil.
The petition further stated that the process was against plant conservation law.
The Vegoras vessel carrying potassium chloride fertilizers imported by government companies arrived at Colombo port on October 13 as part of the government program to distribute organic fertilizers needed for the Maha season.
The ship had transported 30,000 tonnes of fertilizer.
As a result, agronomists express various opinions regarding the fertilizers distributed to the agrarian centers in the districts of Ampara, Batticaloa, Anuradhapura, Kurunegala, Puttalam, Trincomalee and Hambantota.
Meanwhile, the stock of organic fertilizer produced under the organic fertilizer production program implemented by the Land Reform Commission was handed over to the Anuradhapura Fertilizer Secretariat today.
Meanwhile, residents of the Layahalewela area in Balangoda protested against an awareness program organized to start an organic fertilizer project.
The program had to be halted halfway as the villagers left.
The Special Police Task Force (STF) arrested a man and another woman who were stockpiling a stockpile of banned herbicides during a raid on two stores in Angunakolapelessa.
The stockpile of banned herbicides seized by police was turned over to the deputy provincial director of agriculture at the Hambantota administrative complex for further investigation.
Farmers cultivating 950 acres of rice fields in Lunugamvehera Rive Gauche – Yaya 1 and 2 have decided to withdraw from rice cultivation during the Maha season.
Due to the lack of fertilizers and herbicides and the amount of compensation to be paid for crop damage has not yet been decided by the government.
A demonstration organized by several farmers’ organizations demanding a solution to the fertilizer problem took place in the town of Galenbindunuwewa.
Hiru’s correspondent said that the Galenbindunuwewa Kahatagasdigiliya road was also blocked due to the farmers’ protest.
The protesters then attempted to enter the Galenbindunuwewa Agrarian Service Center to deliver a letter to the agriculture officials.
The tea industry in Galle – Kottawagama has alleged that tea yield has declined due to lack of chemical fertilizers.
They organized a demonstration at Kottawagama Estate.
Meanwhile, a demonstration organized by farmers from Mahaweli C area took place in Aralaganwila area in Polonnaruwa.
Farmers from the Magalla Reservoir Project held a protest today near the Magalla Reservoir in Nikaweratiya.
They also said that if they don’t get fertilizer for the Maha season, they should stop releasing water for the crop.
The protesters then marched to the Nikaweratiya divisional secretariat to raise awareness of the fertilizer issue.
Meanwhile, farmers’ protests have taken place in many other areas to demand fertilizer.
A group of representatives from the Saru Bima National Council of Agriculture held a protest in front of the Ministry of Agriculture in Battaramulla today.
They also delivered a letter to the Minister of Agriculture asking him to provide chemical fertilizers for Maha season cultivation.