THANJAVUR: Even as the budget announcement of pulses procurement by the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation (TNCSC) is yet to see light of day, the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED) procurement drive which commenced five days ago has come as a boon to farmers.
M Stalin, a farmer from Kannanthangudi Keezhaiyur who was at the NAFED centre to sell black gram harvested from his four-acre field, said, “In Orathanadu, traders are buying 100 kg of black gram for Rs 4,300 and Rs 700 in Thanjavur market. I get Rs 5,400 here at the government direct procurement centre (DPC).”
NAFED has appointed the Tamilnadu State Agricultural Marketing Board (TNSAMB) as the agency for procuring black gram under the Price Support Scheme (PSS). TNSAMB has in turn appointed the Rajaraja Chozhan Farmers Producers Organisation (FPO), Thanjavur as the primary purchase agent and which has started procurement at the Thanjavur regulated marketing committee building on Nanjikkottai Road.
“There is good response and so far four tonnes of black gram have been procured,” said M Arunmozhiselvan, CEO of the farmers producers organisation. Farmers from the Orathanadu, Valamarkottai and Vandayar Iruppu are selling black gram at the NAFED DPC, he said adding procurement would go on till June.
Farmers are required to bring land certificates like Chitta and Adangal from the village administrative officer (VAO), Aadhaar, bank account number and a copy of the first page of the bank passbook to sell black gram. Farmers also need to bring the yield certificate issued by the respective agriculture officer.
Though procurement has come as a boon, procedural hurdles have upset some farmers. A farmer waiting to sell his produce narrated as there were many vacancies, a VAO has been officiating for three to four revenue villages and it was hard to locate him. A similar situation prevails in the Agriculture department as there are only three to four agriculture officers per panchayat union, which have 60-odd villages each under their purview. If the rules are relaxed, small farmers also could sell at the DPC.