JEYPORE: In a welcome move, the State government has asked millers from Nabarangpur and Ganjam to procure rabi paddy from farmers in Koraput next month. This comes as a major relief to the farming community in the district as most of them are distressed over poor paddy sale due to quality issues. As per reports, 54 millers of Ganjam and 11 millers of Nabarangpur district will procure paddy from different mandis of Koraput in June.
Every year, farmers in Jeypore sub-division produce over 15 lakh quintal paddy during rabi season. But the paddy quality remains slightly inferior than its kharif counterpart and leads to breakage of rice during milling. This poses problems for the district administration as there are few takers and local millers are reluctant to procure paddy from the mandis. It also leads to distress among farmers as many millers, taking advantage of the situation, reportedly deduct up to 10 kg paddy per quintal citing poor quality.
Given the situation, majority of paddy produced in the region during rabi were taken by Balangir and Kalahandi millers in last two years. This year, however, the Civil Supplies department has asked millers from Ganjam and Nabarangpur to procure rabi paddy from Koraput as both the districts are facing a supply deficit of rice under Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana (PM-GKAY). Koraput Civil Supplies Officer PK Panda confirmed the same. “The government has directed millers of Nabarangpur and Ganjam to procure Koraput rabi paddy this year to make up for their rice shortage. The administration will cooperate with outside millers in the procurement process,” he said.