The Central government will soon launch 600 Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samriddhi Kendras, which will not just retail fertilisers but offer one-stop solutions to farmers in the form of crop advisories, soil- and seed-testing facilities, retailing seeds and pesticides, and even custom hiring of agricultural equipment and machines.
The kendras, expected to be launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will provide the facilities to farmers under one roof.
They will retail products under the newly launched “One Nation One Fertiliser” programme of the government. Under that all fertilisers will be sold under the “Bharat” brand.
Sources said each urea-manufacturing unit would promote 20 such kendras while each P&K (phosphorus and potassium) manufacturer or importer would promote another 20.
The initial plan is to set up around 1,000 such model retail units and the number will be scaled up later, depending on the need and demand.
Sources said government schemes that directly impacted farmers would be showcased at the kendras.
The kendras are also being designed to create awareness among farmers about a balanced use of fertilisers, including organic fertilisers and micronutrients.
Sources said in accordance with the plan, these kendras would have to be located at prominent places in a market or near agriculture mandis in villages or blocks so that farmers can access them without difficulty.
It should have the space to accommodate 50-100 farmers so that they can look at the products displayed.
All commercial activities in such kendras such as retailing fertilisers, seeds and pesticides will be done by operators or retailers while extension services such as crop advisories or good farming practices will be provided by Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) or agriculture universities.
The retailer of operator of the kendra will have to be in active contact with KVKs and agriculture universities for organising programmes. Infrastructure such as computers with printers and internet connection, and the LED screen, will have to be part of them.
Plans are also being chalked out to ensure that the kendras hold farmers’ meetings on their premises regularly.
All fertiliser bags, whether they contain urea, di-ammonium phosphate (DAP), muriate of potash (MOP) or NPK, will have names such as “Bharat Urea”, irrespective of which company manufacturers it and which sector, public or private, it is in.
The order stated the single-brand name and the logo of the Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Janurvarak Pariyojana (PMBJP), the scheme under which the Central government grants subsidies annually to fertiliser companies, will have to be displayed prominently on all bags while the company name can occupy a smaller portion of the bag.