‘Govt to open 21 mandis to procure paddy from farmers for 2017-18’

Srinagar, Oct 10 (GNS): Minister for Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs (FCS&CA) and Information Department Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali today announced that 21 paddy procurement centres (mandis) would be opened for the year 2017-18 and the procurement would start from next week on October 17th .

The Minister made the announcement during a review meeting with Food Corporation of India (FCI), which was attended by MLA Kathua Ravi Jasrotia, MLA Marh Sukhnandan Kumar, MLA Chhamb Dr. Kishan Lal, Commissioner Secretary FCS&CA Shafiq Raina, Director FCS&CA Jammu R A Inqalibi, Joint Director Agriculture Inputs K S Sambyal, General Manager, J&K Kishore Kumar, and other concerned officers.

Speaking during the meeting, the Minister said the purpose of establishing mandis is to ensure that the State farmers get the best price for their produce and are not getting exploited by private buyers.

Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali announced that for year 2017-18 the 21 procurement centres would be opened in areas including Gajansoo, Channu Chak, Sohanjana, Marh, Dai Chak-Badrode, Jourian, Pargwal, Swankha Morh (Vijaypur Zone), Rajpura Proper (Rajpora Zone), Bhajwal, Nagri, Sanji Morh, Airwan, Chhan Arrorian, Palli, Lakhri, Dungara, Pallan Wala, Gura Manhasan, Float, Khokhyal, and Parladhpur.

The Minister directed to start the paddy procurement process by next week on Tuesday on Oct 17th from district Kathua.

The meeting was informed that last year 15 paddy procurement centres where established, which included seven mandis for District Kathua and eight for District Jammu. It was revealed that there was an increase of around one lakh quintals in procurement when comparing 2016-17 to year 2015-16. The meeting was informed that for the year 2016-17 total of 1,15,440 quintals of paddy was procured from State farmers, out of which 41250 quintals were procured from District Kathua, while 71932 quintals were procured from district Jammu.

Expressing his optimism for better results, the Minister said the establishing of procurement centres in the State is a recent thing and with each year all the concerned agencies dealing with it are improving. He urged upon the concerned to work on all the modalities so that farmers do not face any kind problem in selling their produce.

Assuring FCI all possible support from the Government, Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali said that permanent sheds would be constructed across the State in a phased manner so that the procured paddy saved from unwanted losses.

During the meeting, MLA Kathua Ravi Jasrotia assured that he would provide five lakhs each for construction of permanent sheds at Nagri and Palli. (GNS)