Paddy procurement to wind up soon in Sundargarh

Sundargarh civil supplies officer (CSO) DC Beshra said the district has received fresh target to procure 1.94 lakh quintal paddy.
Representative Image.
Representative Image.(File Photo | EPS)

ROURKELA : Paddy procurement in tribal-dominated Sundargarh district is likely to head for an early closure this kharif season as authorities concerned claim farmers have almost sold their surplus produce and hence, most of the mandis are already closed.

Administrative sources said against the first phase procurement target of 18.93 quintal this marketing season, the district had achieved the target nearly 10 days back. Till February 29, over 19.24 lakh quintal were procured from registered farmers, they said.

As per information, around 53,798 farmers had registered to sell their paddy with the minimum support price (MSP) for fair average quality (FAQ) fixed at `2,183 per quintal. While procurement had kicked off on December 15 last year, it took around a fortnight to streamline functioning of 135 paddy procurement centres across the district.

The paddy sale initially continued on a sluggish note till December 26 last year with the total procurement figure barely at 76,749 quintal. However, from second week of January this year the procurement began picking up pace.

Sundargarh deputy registrar of cooperative societies (DRCS) US Das informed till February 29 a total of 19,24,895 quintal were received, adding the district has received a fresh procurement target and farmers with sale tokens can sell their paddy.

Sundargarh civil supplies officer (CSO) DC Beshra said the district has received fresh target to procure 1.94 lakh quintal paddy. “With no surplus paddy available with the farmers almost all PPCs have closed in the Sundargarh sub-division excepting some at Bonai, Panposh and Sundargarh,” he said adding, procurement of the balance target of 1.63 lakh quintal is likely to end much before the closing date of March 31.

Reliable sources said since private parties are lifting paddy from the doorsteps of farmers by paying around `2,000 to `2,100 per quintal, the latter despite having sale tokens are avoiding the hassle to visit procurement centres to sell their produce.

They said offer of `2,000 to `2,100 is relatively more beneficial for the farmers as they are saved from the trouble of transporting their crops to the mandis at own cost. Besides, this also saves them from being victims to ‘Katni-Chhatni’ practice where farmers lose around 5 kg per quintal over fair average quality.

Notably, over the past couple of years the government has reduced procurement target by around 2 lakh quintal despite the district reporting bumper paddy harvest this time.

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