Acute shortage of urea has left many small farmers in the district helpless as they claim that due to the arrival of the fertiliser in small quantities, their requirement is not being met.
The cooperative societies are also supplying urea to farmers but are having a tough time satisfying their needs.
"The wheat crop is now about 30 to 40 days old. Most of the farmers in the district use one bag per acre after the first irrigation or just before irrigation, but urea is not available in the required quantity yet. I have grown wheat on about 12 acres and need at least 12 bags. However, there are only 600 bags available in the multipurpose cooperative society of Devi Wala village with farmers of five villages waiting for their turn," said Gurbhagat Singh, a farmer from Devi Wala village.
"The small farmers who cannot afford to buy the required fertilisers are at the receiving end. I want 10 bags of urea but so far, have failed to get any. I have also delayed the first irrigation to my fields, waiting for the fertiliser as my soil is not very fertile and the wheat crop will turn pale if not taken care of," said Gurwinder Singh, a farmer from Nathewala village of the district.
The shortage of urea is creating panic among farmers now. The well-to-do farmers are reportedly buying urea for the entire season while others stand in long queues for their initial share.
Gura Singh, secretary of the Devi Wala multipurpose cooperative society, said he had got 600 bags of urea which were distributed among farmers from five villages.
"We calculated the total land owned by farmers as per their limit of loans with the society and the measurement came up to about 1,070 acres. The society is trying to arrange more fertilisers now," he said.
Atma Singh Sidhu, chief agriculture officer of Faridkot, admitted that there was shortage of urea but said the district was going to get adequate quantities of the fertiliser in one or two days.
"About 60,000 bags of urea are arriving and within a week, there will be no problem of shortage. Farmers need not panic," he said.
Sidhu said the district had already received about 22,000 tonnes of urea while only about 35,000 was required for wheat.