The farmer from Nashik, who had sent his onion sale earnings to the Prime Minister’s Office to highlight low returns, has alleged that the district authorities wrongly described his produce as of “low quality”.
Sanjay Sathe, from Niphad tehsil in Nashik district of Maharashtra, on Monday wrote a letter to the PMO in which he said the authorities prepared a report about his onion produce without any inquiry and that it was “false”.
Sathe had earlier sent Rs 1,064, his earnings from onion sale in the wholesale market, to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on November 29 as a protest.
However, a report later submitted to the Maharashtra government by the district deputy registrar office said the farmer’s onions were of “medium to low quality” and “blackish” in colour. Refuting the claim, Sathe, in his letter to the PMO, said, “I sold 750 kg onion and earned Rs 1,064. But without any inquiry, the state government officials in their report stated that my onions were blackish and of low quality. It is false and officials are misguiding you.” “I hope you will understand that if authorities can lie to you, what challenges a common man would be facing in government offices,” he said in the letter sent from the local post office.
Almost every onion grower was facing the same situation of low rates and the state’s “apathy” towards it, Sathe claimed, and requested the prime minister to find a solution to it.
Notably, authorities of the Lasalgaon Agriculture Produce Market Committee had said last week that the report submitted by the district deputy registrar office to the state government was “false”.
No official of the district deputy registrar office had met the APMC authorities in connection with the farmer’s case, they said. Nashik district in north Maharashtra accounts for about 50 per cent of onion production in India. The Lasalgaon APMC in Nashik is the country’s largest wholesale onion market.