Hyderabad: Chief Minister N Kiran Kumar Reddy on Monday has asked the East Godavari district Collector and other officials concerned to enumerate the labour who requires employment in case of non-cultivation during Kharif in some areas in the district.
The officials informed the Chief Minister that at present in 13 mandals, Rs 50 crore of works have been identified to be taken up under MGNREGS in the district.
The officials informed that the intention of the farmers of Godavari district is not for Crop Holiday but want to reschedule their cropping timing so as to avoid the November cyclones.
The officials also informed that the farmers wanted to go for early Rabi this year and early release of water for next Kharif, most probably by May 15, 2012. The Chief Minister has asked the officials to work out the possibilities well in advance.
It may be mentioned that the state government has taken up several new initiatives for the welfare of the farming community and farm labourers apart from providing free electricity to 28 lakh agricultural pump sets.
The welfare measures and the initiatives include—waiver of crop loans worth Rs 13,000 crore during 2008, waiver of interest on crop loans of Rs 650 crore for Kharif loans-2010 in 680 mandals, input subsidy of Rs 1,800 crore for last year cyclones, fertiliser subsidy of Rs 8,500 crore per year, seed subsidy of Rs 400 crore and the increase in input subsidy from Rs.4,500 to Rs.6,000 per hectare.
At the request of the Chief Minister, the Centre has enhanced the MSP of paddy for another Rs 80 and the Chief Minister again requested the Union Government to provide Rs 120 bonus for paddy.
It may be stated here that the MSP for paddy was increased from Rs 520 to just Rs 590 from 1999 to 2004 (only Rs 70) but was increased from Rs 590 to Rs 1110 during 2004 to 2011 (an increase of Rs 520). The CMO claimed that it was because of the constant persuasion of the Chief Minister that the Union Government had permitted to export 10 lakh Metric Tonnes of non-basmati rice to other countries.
It is worth mentioning here that for the first time in the State, Rs 2100 crore provided to Civil Supplies Department to procure 22 lakh Metric Tonnes of paddy which was purchased by government agencies including IKP women groups from the farmers to ensure MSP to them.
As the bumper harvest of paddy about 32 per cent excess production, the state government is contemplating to construct 18 lakh Metric Tonne godown space through IKP, Marketing Department, MARKFED, State Warehousing Corporation etc, in the next one and half year apart from the additional 10 lakh Metric Tonnes by the Central agencies in the state.
This would bring up the total godown space to about 28 lakh Metric Tonnes. At present, there is a godown space of 43 lakh Metric Tonnes in the state.
The state government hopes that the results of these measures will mitigate the difficulties of the farming community.