Lack of infrastructure hits Srinivaspur mango market

Lack of infrastructure hits Srinivaspur mango market

Calling for attention: Sheds being constructed for the mango market at the Srinivaspur APMC yard. DH Photos

Srinivaspur is the mango larder of Kolar district which has earned the pride of being the Asia’s largest mango producing districts.

Mangoes are cultivated on a vast expanse of area of 22,325 hectares of land in the district and the fruits are of export quality. Inspite of various credits to its basket, the taluk has not be able to provide an effecient market system for the mangoes produced there.

Plagued with infrastructure ineffeciency and other problems, the biggeset challenge before the mango market is to simply survive without them.

Meanwhile, the construction of sheds for the mango market which will be held next month at the Srinivaspur APMC, is going on at a brisk pace. The APMC market, situated on the outskirts of the town, receives mangoes after the first week of May, every year. Traders from various districts and States arrive to Srinivaspur. Thousands of farmers and labourers also arrive from the district at this annual mela.

Inspite of thousands of people gathering at the mango market, it is unfortunate to note that there is hardly any infrastructure.

The connecting road from Srinivaspur town to the APMC yard does not exist at all.  Gravel stones have been laid for the construction of the road, but even these have vanished due to continues wear and tear. Without a proper asphalted road, the connectivity to the APMC itself is disappointing. It is only heat and dust which welcomes the business community from far-off places.

A few showers, and the entire yard is converted into a huge muddy slush. Large poodles of water turns the entire yard totally messy.

Another major disadvantage of the APMC yard is that there is no drinking water facility here. Also, lack of toilets and power connectivity add more woes to the market area.

Peak summer is a real punishment to the people who arrive here. By dawn, the traders have scramble around and try to squint their eyes to purchase their lot. If Srinivaspur taluk earns the pride of being one of the best mango-producing regions of State, on the other hand, lack of infrastructure has put the town in a bad light.

Initial days

The history of this booming industry can be traced to the days when, in the initial days, mangoes used to be sold only in the private markets. The farmers suffered losses in this system. Only after the string of protests by the members of the Prantha Raitha Sanghas, did the Government open its eyes. The Srinivaspur APMC came up on the sprawling, now-dried bed of Boyinachipalli tank on the outskirts of the town in 2008-2009.

Business is going brisk in the last two years at the APMC. This is the third year in succession and still needs to address certain obstacles to put itself on the paths of propsperity. The Government has earmarked an amount of Rs one crore for the development of Srinivaspur APMC.

It may take some time, before this amount is effeciently utilised. The action plan for the development projects has been prepared and once it is approved, the works can be implemented, the APMC sources said.

The space inside the APMC is just not sufficient for the mango market. Some of the middlemen have also established stalls outside its premises. All those involved in the business have been strictly warned to follow all the APMC rules and guidelines in toto.

In the recently held progress review meeting of the Zilla Panchayat, Chief Executive Officer N Shantappa has instructed the officers of the Horticulture department to conduct a spot inspection of the Srinivaspur APMC and the facilties it requires and submit a report in this regard. This is the only ray of hope to the trading community in the taluk.