HYDERABAD: Farmers expressed displeasure over paddy procurement being undertaken by some primary agriculture cooperative societies. They said that the hand-in-glove tactics of some societies and rice millers are adversely impacting the procurement process.
To ensure minimum support price (MSP) for paddy, the state government roped in government agencies. Primary agriculture cooperative societies (PACS) and women self-help groups play a key role in the procurement process.
The government approved Rs 1,868 MSP for common variety paddy per quintal and for Grade A variety Rs 1,888 for 2020-21. However, for the 2021-22 marketing season, the MSP has been hiked to Rs1,940 for the common variety and Rs1,960 for Grade A.
In order to strengthen the financial base of PACS, the government gradually increased the number of paddy procurement centres. Taking advantage, some society chairpersons have resorted to irregularities. Allegedly, they failed to procure paddy in time and offered low prices.
Speaking to Deccan Chronicle, Ravi, a farmer from Gupanpally village in Nizamabad mandal, said that women self-help groups went about paddy procurement better than PACS. “We are forced to wait for a long time in society”, he said.
Kamareddy district collector A. Sharath said that farmers should be cautious while selling paddy, as price is based on the quality of the produce. Replying to a question, he said that they have never received any complaints against primary agriculture cooperative societies.
Meanwhile, the state government set up around 7,000 paddy procurement centres in PACS across the state. Around 1.41 crore metric tonnes of paddy were procured so far, civil supplies sources said. Offering prices below the MSP and under-weighment issues will be tackled by civil supplies and legal metrology departments, they said.