Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Cuttack, Nov 7:
The districts collectors under Revenue Divisional Commissioner (RDC), Central division today met at the office of RDC in Odisha’s Millenium City to discuss paddy procurement process for Kharif season.
With farmer suicides continuing unabated in the state, the top officials of the state government today discussed issues concerning paddy procurement, direct money transfer to the farmers’ bank accounts and fixing the minimum support price (MSP) of paddy.
The state government decided to procure about 20% paddy of the total procurement target from the Central revenue division. Besides, it was decided to procure paddy from sharecroppers this year.
“We have set a target to procure 19.96% paddy from Central revenue zone of the total procurement target this Kharif marketing season (KMS). Paddy Procurement Automation System (P-PAS) system has been introduced in 38 blocks under Central division. With this, money will be credited to the accounts of the farmers directly. We have decided to open 3000 mandis for procurement of paddy for Kharif season. I have directed the collectors to open more mandis for the convenience of the farmers, if need arises. Besides, I have also directed the officials to procure surplus paddy from sharecroppers,” Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Das Burma said.
“At a time when the state is facing drought-like situation, we are initiating several measures to facilitate smooth procurement of paddy,” he added.
The meeting was attended by Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Minister Sanjay Das Burma, RDC (Central division) Bikash Chandra Mohapatra and collectors of ten districts under RDC (Central division) and senior officials of civil supplies department.
District collectors of Cuttack, Jajpur, Kendrapara, Bhadrak, Balasore, Jagatsinghpur, Mayurbhanj, Puri, Khurda and Nayagarh participated in the meeting.
A similar meeting was also held yesterday at Berhampur where top officials of administration and civil supplies department of south Odisha held a meeting at the office of RDC, southern division.
Minister Sanjay Das Burma, Minister for SC/ST Development Lal Bihari Himirika, RDC (Southern division) Sanjay Singh, principal secretary Madhusudan Padhi, district collectors and officials of agriculture and civil supplies departments of eight districts of south Odisha participated in the meeting.
Notably, the state government, on November 4, revised the paddy procurement target to 45 lakh MT from earlier set 30 MT this year for which the government would spend Rs 6, 500 crore on it.
Earlier, the state government had decided to open 3000 paddy procurement centres across the state from November 15 for upcoming Kharif season. Besides, it was also decided to introduce 100 more Paddy Procurement Automation System (P-PAS) used for transferring payments directly to farmers’ accounts following the sale.