Hyderabad: Seed dealers in Andhra Pradesh and Gujarat have apparently harvested trouble after selling spurious seeds to farmers in Telangana.
The State Police have launched a crackdown on dealers of substandard seeds, with possibilities of invoking the Preventive Detention Act also being explored.
The drive against spurious seed dealers comes in the wake of rising instances where farmers suffered huge losses after falling prey to the guile of such dealers.
Instructions have been issued from the State Police headquarters to Police Commissioners and Superintendents of Police in districts to launch the drive against spurious seed sellers. The idea is to contain the supply of spurious seeds in the initial stage itself before it spreads to other places.
In a joint operation that was carried out last month, the Mancherial police arrested a 13-member inter-State gang that was allegedly selling spurious cotton seeds in different parts of the district. As many as 33 quintals of seeds, worth Rs 65.6 lakh, was seized from the possession of the gang members.
Senior police officials said the department has decided to control the supply of sub-standard quality of seeds during the kharif season.
“With this objective, we have given instructions to Police Commissioners and Superintendents of Police in districts to deal firmly with spurious seed dealers,” an official said.
Apart from registering cases under the Indian Penal Code (IPC), the police are also exploring the possibility of invoking the Preventive Detention (PD) Act against the seed dealers who fail to mend their ways. An ordinance was issued in 2017 to detain seed sellers under the PD Act.
Focus is also on the actual suppliers, who were sending these seeds to dealers in the State at competitive prices. According to the police, most farmers are facing problems because of spurious seeds that were supplied from Kurnool and Guntur of Andhra Pradesh and also from Gujarat. A few dealers were also supplying seeds that are banned in the State.
Additional Director-General of Police (Law and Order) Jitender said instructions were already issued to the police officials in all districts to take stern action against persons supplying spurious seeds.