The Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development (MoAIWD) has recalled a procurement placed on farm equipment that was costed at $50,000,000. A statement by the ministry reads “MoAIWD would like to sincerely apologize to the nation for the maladministration and related irregularities on the farm equipment..”.
Part of the equipment that was procured by the ministry, were 177 Sonalika tractors, with other farming equipment that was bought for the One Village One Product (OVOP), aiming to access the equipment to small holder farmers. According to the statement, the ministry realized that maintaining the equipment was costly, hence justifying the disposal of the equipment through loans. The statement also hints that the equipment was sold lesser than was bought by the ministry.
The statement, signed by the secretary of the ministry, has acknowledged its fault on the matter. “The MoAIWD would like to admit to have failed to conduct a proper needs assessment in the beneficiary institutions to guide what equipment should be procured using the loan” says the statement. The ministry afforded the purchase from a loan from the Export-Import Bank of India.