BHUBANESWAR: The State Government has fixed procurement target of 30 lakh tonnes of rice for 2016-17 kharif marketing season (KMS).A proposal to this effect was approved by the Cabinet in its meeting at the Secretariat on Thursday. Announcing the decision, Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Dasburma said the minimum support price (MSP) of common variety of paddy has been fixed at `1,470 per quintal while the MSP for Grade A variety will be `1,510 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.
Paddy will be procured from farmers without Aadhaar number, Dasburma said and added that they will, however, 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 tonnes and 50.81 lakh tonnes paddy were 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 from all 30 districts through Primary Agricultural 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.
Dasburma 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 the decision to reduce VAT on pulses and dal of all kinds from five to one per cent for three months. Chief Secretary AP 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.
During the three months, the number of dealers has doubled while the volume of trade has gone up, he said.
A decision on continuing the reduced VAT rate will be taken after December 31, 2016, Padhi added.