Farmers from a village in Marathwada region filed a police complaint against the India Meteorological Department(IMD ) recently, accusing it has given wrong monsoon prediction after it has come to mutual understanding with seed and pesticide manufacturers and inflating the monsoon forecast figures.
Gangabheeshan Thavre, a farmer-In his complaint with Dindrud police of Beed district in Marathwada, said he undertook sowing operations based on the IMD forecast, but after a brief spell, there has been no rain, which has caused him huge financial losses.
“Based on the wrong forecast, I along with all the other farmers in my village completed sowing by spending lakhs on seeds, fertiliser, spray pumps etc. But there was no rain and our sowing has been spoiled causing us huge financial losses,” Thavre said in his letter.[irp]
He accused the IMD of cheating farmers and alleged connivance between IMD officials and seed and fertiliser companies for a ‘faulty’ forecast.
The Dindrud police said they will verify the claims before registering a criminal case. IMD officials, however, said they have taken the matter to the highest level.
Dismissing the farmers’ allegations, Dr. P.K. Nandankar, senior scientist, IMD, Pune-said newspapers had reported extensively on the dry spell in Marathwada. He added that IMD bulletins are sent to the State Department of Agriculture twice a week, and agricultural universities are updated through messages and alerts to help them advise farmers better.
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