Millers buy more paddy from farmers than Telangana govt

HYDERABAD: Rice millers have purchased more paddy from farmers than the stage government in the kharif procurement season, which began in the last week of October. Farmers associations said the growers preferred to sell to millers, even at prices below the minimum support price (MSP) due to the government's delay in opening procurement centres.

Millers are thought to have purchased close to three lakh tonnes, compared to the government's current capacity of only about two lakh tonnes. Farmers' organisations claim that millers were paying between Rs. 1,600 and Rs. 1,800 per tonne as opposed to the MSP of `2,040 to `2,060 per tonne depending on quality.

Farmers associations cite two reasons for this. The first, farmers are in dire need of money to begin rabi operations which started have started, and second the government’s delay in paying Rythu Bandhu funds.

The state’s farmers are estimated to have produced 1.41 crore tonnes of paddy in the kharif season. The government has decided to set up around 7,000 centres to purchase one crore tonnes at MSP. The other 41 lakh tonnes of paddy are to be sold in the open market and also used for seed production.

The government opened 2,000 centres in Nizamabad and Nalgonda districts in the last week of October, where paddy stocks first arrived in the market. After nearly three weeks, the civil supplies corporation could increase the procurement centres to 2,500. While these centres covered just 16 districts out of 32 districts where procurement centres were proposed, the procurement process started on a full scale only in 12 districts so far.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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