Desperate farmers in Madhya Pradesh are on a looting spree to overcome a serious shortage in fertilisers. At least three unprecedented incidents of looting of urea have been reported in the last week.
Farmers robbed 300 bags of urea from a truck in Datia district, picketed a warehouse in Harda district and raided a goods train carrying urea in Ratlam.
Embarrassed, the Bharatiya Janata Party government in the state is blaming the Congress-led central government for the messy state of affairs.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has asked two union ministers to intervene. "The state has received about 100,000 tonnes up to Dec 12 and requires at least 9,600 more daily for the rest of the month, failing which farmers would be put to great hardship," he wrote to Chemicals and Fertiliser Minister Ram Vilas Paswan and Railway Minister Lalu Prasad.
Many farmers fought with the disbursing agencies, mainly cooperative societies. They also held demonstrations — in most places supported by the Congress party.
"Reports about the deteriorating law and order situation in various areas have been submitted to the government," said senior police official SK Raut.
On its part, New Delhi has assured Madhya Pradesh's agriculture secretary Pravesh Sharma that it will provide additional urea within a week. That is the news Madhya Pradesh has been waiting for.