It is interesting that my neighbor with a very small piece of land made this suggestion, which will not doubt affect him also, but he was thinking of the national good and I credit him with having a lot of common sense.
He suggested that the government grant the current subsidy to half the acreage and offer unsubsidized fertilizer to the other half. They already have the records of those who have received subsidies and will therefore be able to reduce the cheating. By this method only those promising to cultivate all the land will receive the subsidy so the acreage under cultivation will remain the same.
What he also said was that if they could not afford the extra, at full price, they will use all they receive on all their land and will be careful not to waste any. Those who pay full price for the other half will know the true value of the fertilizer, subsidized and not, and so wastage that occurs now will be eliminated.
What he said and I concur, there is a lot of wastage of fertilizer, that gets washed into the rivers and streams due to overflow. This suggestion will also reduce the waste of water. Currently people take all their water allotment and any excess for their fields flows out of their fields along with the good fertilizer. If his proposal is taken up, then each farmer will only allow in only as much water into his field as he wants and not allow overflow. So he will shut his water supply from his canal and by default allow people like me at the end of the canal to have the water I want, which at present I don’t get due to people taking up entitlements whether they require it or not.
Full credit to him who puts country before person; He would be lynched by his neighbors for even making a suggestion of this nature. It is hard to take away a freebie that is given due to politically expedient decision making not in the long term interest of the nation, and accordingly of all its people. This is where fools elect fools to long-term ruin.
This husbanding of fertilizer along with water will have a double whammy benefit and the saving of a further Rs25billion can be used instead for rural infrastructure development, which should only be what the government should really get involved and not social engineering by means of subsidy and political favors and grandiose irrigation projects of limited value.