BHUBANESWAR: Amid alleged irregularities in the distribution of tokens to farmers, the State government has procured over 2.38 lakh tonnes of paddy from 11 districts by end of November, which is 85 per cent (pc) more than the corresponding period last year.
Paddy purchase under the decentralised procurement system during the same period in 2019 was a little over 1.29 lakh tonnes.This is the second year of paddy procurement under online token distribution to farmers to bring in transparency in the process and weeding out middlemen.
Bargarh farmers have sold highest quantity of paddy of over 1.42 lakh tonnes under minimum support price (MSP) followed by Sambalpur district with 35,103 tonnes and 28,813 tonnes in Kalahandi district registering a growth of 105 pc, 101 pc and 119 pc respectively.
In order to streamline the system, State Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Ranendra Pratap Swain has assigned 12 senior officials of the department to 12 districts to ensure hassle-free paddy procurement in the current kharif marketing season.
These officials have been asked to supervise paddy procurement so that there is no flaw in the system and the process is also carried out smoothly. These officers will visit the assigned districts, hold discussions with farmers, officials of the Primary Agriculture Cooperative Societies (PACS) and local representatives to understand their problems and sort it out immediately.
Responding to complaints that some of the registered farmers have not received their tokens despite prior intimation about the date of paddy sale, the Minister said farmers having more than 10 acre of land are to be verified by district administration. Their token will be issued after the verification is over.