BHUBANESWAR: The state government has fixed procurement target of 30 lakh ton of rice for the 2016-17 kharif marketing season (MKS).
A proposal to this effect was approved by the cabinet in its meeting here today at the secretariat presided over by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik. Announcing the decision, minister of state for food supplies and consumer welfare Sanjay Dasburma said the minimum support price (MSP) of the common variety of paddy has been fixed at Rs.1470 per quintal while the MSP for Grade A variety will be `1510 per quintal. The MSP for paddy has been fixed by the Centre.
The minister said paddy will be procured from farmers who are registered in the online portal of the department. Dasburma said 8.29 lakh farmers have been registered so far out of whom 7.93 lakh have Aadhaar number.
However, paddy will be procured from farmers not having Aadhaar number, Dasburma said and added that they will have to produce the Aadhaar number by October 30. Kharif paddy will be procured during November, 2016 to March, 2017 and Rabi paddy during May and June, 2017, he said.
In KMS 2014-15 and 2015-16, 52.45 lakh ton and 50.81 lakh ton paddy was procured respectively. The cabinet authorised the Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare minister to revise the target if required.
The Odisha State Civil Supplies Corporation (OSCSC) will procure paddy in all the 30 districts through Primary Agrocultural Cooperative Societies (PACS), pani panchayats, Large Scale Agriculture Multipurpose Societies (LAMPS) and women self help groups. Other state agencies will be deployed for paddy procurement in surplus districts only, he said.
The minister said during 2015-16 KMS, 160 high procuring blocks conducted procurement operations in P-PAS application. He said P-PAS system will be extended to 134 blocks in 2016-17 operations. With no procurement in rest of the 20 blocks, the entire state will now come under the paddy procurement automation system, he said.
The cabinet also approved a proposal to extend for three months the decision to reduce VAT on pulses and dal of all kinds from 5 to one percent. Chief secretary AP Padhi said during the three months, the number of dealers have doubled and while the volume of trade has also gone up.
Padhi said the tax rate on pulses and dal was reduced for a period of three months from July 1, 2016 to keep the price under control. There was also a demand from trade and industry to this effect, he said and added that a decision whether to continue reduced VAT rate will be taken after December 31, 2016.