The block agriculture officer here has not sent even a single soil sample to the soil testing laboratory during the past six months, which is mandatory under the law.
Every year, the government sets a target of collecting random soil samples for the block agriculture officer of every district and the officer is supposed to send them for testing to the laboratory of the area concerned.
The block agriculture officer of Kapurthala had got a target of collecting 2,000 soil samples from his area, but has failed to collect and send even a single soil sample to the soil testing laboratory situated at Phagwara.
The random soil test has to be carried out in by every agricultural officer and the report is supposed to be made available to farmers free of cost.
By the soil test report, farmers could get to know about the soil strength and nutrients present in the area after which he can spray chemicals as per the soil's need in his farm to get a good quality crop.
Asked about the reason of not sending the samples for testing, Charanjiv Lal Sharma, block agriculture officer, said, "There is only one agricultural development officer in the block, while six posts of agricultural development officers are lying vacant. So, due to his busy schedule, it becomes difficult for him to collect soil samples by visiting different places."
He claimed, "Though, we have only one agriculture development officer, even then we have sent nearly 600 soil samples to the laboratory for testing."
However, Dr Jaswinder Singh, agriculture development officer, at the soil testing lab at Phagwara, said that they have not received even a single soil sample for testing from Kapurthala.
According to sources, soil testing is very useful for farmers as it not only saves the crops from destruction, but also saves the money to be spent on fertilizers. The test mainly gives information about the presence or absence of three major nutrients in soil including phosphorus, nitrogen and potassium.