Hyderabad: The State government has directed that the Food Corporation of India, the official machinery and the rice millers, in close coordination, should take concrete steps to ensure Minimum Support Price to the farmer for the ensuring rabi season. The State government has issued guidelines to open paddy purchase centers in each district through Civil Supplies Corporation and to see that Minimum Support Price is provided to the farmer. If there is any problem regarding the Minimum Support Price, the government has requested the farmers to bring to the notice of the respective Joint Collectors of the districts.
The Food and Civil Supplies Minister, Mr D Sridhar Babu, recently held a video conference with the Joint Collectors regarding providing of Minimum Support Price for the rabi crop and storage facilities in the godowns. The Minister brought to the notice of the Chief Minister, Mr N Kiran Kumar Reddy, the issues he was reviewing from time to time. The Chief Minister is also issued instructions from time to time to the Minister and officials concerned regarding paddy procurement for the rabi crop, its storage facilities, MSP. The CM directed that they should chalk out specified plans regarding these issues.
It may be stated here that during the khariff season up to March 31, a quantity of 40.22 lakh tonnes of rice (37.15 lakh tonnes of raw rice and 3.07 lakh tonnes of boiled rice) has been procured. With the coordinated efforts of the rice millers, Food Corporation of India, State Civil Supplies Corporation and the Railways it was ensured that there was no problem regarding storage of kharif paddy.
As far as rabi procurement is concerned, the Civil Supplies Minister already conducted two review meetings with the officials concerned and made several suggestions required. During the Rabi season that is from April to September, it is expected that 40 lakh tonnes of rice might be procured which consists of 16 tonnes of raw rice and 24 lakh tonnes of boiled rice. The Food and Civil Supplies Minister issued clear instructions to the Joint Collectors, FCI and Rice Millers to daily review the situation and ensure that there are no storage problems.
At present in the State, there is storage facility for 3 lakh tonnes food-grains. Every month for public distribution, 3 lakh tonnes of rice is being vacated from the go-downs besides 4 lakh tonnes of boiled rice being exported to other States through railway wagons. Thus every month nearly 10 lakh tonnes of foodgrain storage space is being created in the State. Hence, there will not be any problem for storing 40 lakh tonnes of paddy for the rabi crop. The FCI also informed that they are having a vacant go-down space of 3 lakh tonnes in the State on 100% storage basis and if they utilise the storage up to 120% another 5 to 6 lakh tonnes of additional space would available.
Levy rice lasts up to May 2011 only and hence there won’t be any storage problem in the districts. The Government has also instructed the Joint Collectors to take on rent locally available go-downs if necessary wherever required. The State Government has directed the District Collectors to review from time to time and take necessary steps on the procurement of paddy and rice and its storage facilities and ensure that no delays occur in the process.
The Civil Supplies Corporation will take necessary steps regarding providing of cash-credit facility from the Reserve Bank for the IKP Groups and the other Government agencies regarding procurement of paddy on MSP as well as milling. (NSS)