Reported by Chinmaya Dehury/Edited by Swetaparna Mohanty
BHUBANESWAR, July 24
Centre has asked the state government to avail assistance under the National Mission and Food Processing (NMFP) scheme to set up and modernize rice mills in the state in order to augment milling capacity. It has blamed the state for lagging behind in availing assistance under the scheme. Limited milling capacity has resulted in delayed processing and delivery of rice to Food Corporation of India (FCI), in the process depriving farmers of real benefits, it said.
“We are informed that in the 11th plan and first year of 12th five year plan, Rs 560.20 crore and Rs 181.60 crore respectively were disbursed as grant-in-aid. But, it is also seen that your state has not taken much assistance under the scheme. This scheme has now been subsumed under the National Mission and Food Processing (NMFP) to be implemented by states. Now, it is up to the state governments to invite proposals and provide grant in aid in setting up and modernize rice mills,” Sudhir Kumar, secretary, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution said in his official letter to state chief secretary J K Mohapatra.
Under the existing provisions promoters of rice mills can avail a benefit of 25 per cent cost of the plant and machinery and technical civil works subject to a maximum of Rs 50 lakh in general areas while 33.3 per cent subject to a maximum of Rs 75 lakh in difficult areas and the North East.
The Centre is promoting paddy production in eastern states through the scheme of National Food Security Mission and Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana.