BHUBANESHWAR: Despite cash crunch, the state government has procured 3.58 lakh tonnes of paddy from 53,000 farmers in nine districts of the State.
Though the total value of the procured paddy is about Rs 526 crore, the government has already paid Rs 409 crore to the farmers online, said Minister of State for Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Sanjay Dasburma today.
After a review meeting with the Food Supplies and Cooperative department officials, the Minister said that paddy procurement is underway in 67 blocks of 9 districts through 255 Primary Agricultural Cooperative Societies (PACS).
While demonetisation has affected paddy procurement in the State, Dasbarma said that
farmers are also facing difficulties in withdrawing money.
Paddy procurement was started in Atabira, Godabhaga and Kolapani blocks of Bargarh district from November 15.
Alleging distress sale of paddy in western Odisha districts, the Congress today said that farmers are selling their paddy to private traders as the government has failed to open required numbers of
President of the Congress Farmers Cell Amiya Patnaik further alleged that farmers are not getting minimum support price.
The state government has fixed a procurement target of 30 lakh tonnes of rice for the 2016-17 kharif marketing season (MKS). The minimum support price (MSP) for common variety of paddy has been fixed at Rs 1,470 per quintal while the
MSP for Grade-A variety is Rs 1,510 per quintal.
In KMS 2014-15 and 2015-16, 52.45 lakh ton and 50.81 lakh ton paddy was procured respectively.