Farmers’ association says the government should pay at least Rs. 3,000 a quintal

The Tami Nadu Sugarcane Growers’ Association have demanded an increase in the State Government Advised Price for sugarcane by cane growers affiliated to the NPKRR cooperative sugar mill in Thalainayar near Mayiladuthurai. The State government advised price was announced as Rs. 550 a quintal to supplement the Fair and Remunerative Price of Rs. 2,100 per quintal announced by the Centre.

The Centre announced an increase of Rs. 2,100 a quintal as the support price, fair and remunerative price (FRP) as against Rs. 1,700 fixed in the previous year. The State government’s State Advised Price for cane was lower than last year’s Rs. 650 per quintal.

According to cane growers, this SAP was lower than the previous year even as the Centre’s price was increased.

Kasinathan, State Secretary, Tamil Nadu Cane Growers Association, told The Hindu that the sugarcane growers had been demanding Rs. 4,000 a quintal. “But, this cumulative FRP including transport costs of Rs. 2,650 a quintal was way too low. It should at least be increased to Rs. 3,000 a quintal, by increasing the SAP,” says Mr. Kasinathan.

While prices of other goods have gone up, price of sugar has come down. The government should support the cane growers,

15 per cent interest

The long-delayed payment by NPKRR Cooperative Society for last year’s off take is yet to be compensated in terms of interest paid by farmers to the loans taken from banks. According to Mr. Kasinathan, farmers were assured of a 15 per cent interest for the delay in payment for the off-take by several months.

“The State government has announced to compensate the delay with a 15 per cent interest. However, the cooperative mill is yet to make the payment.”

Farmers here have demanded filling up of vacancy of Managing Director for NKRR Cooperative Sugar Mill. According to farmers, the post had been vacant for more than five months. “An official from Madurai has been made in-charge as the signing authority. The mill is functioning without an in-house MD,” Mr. Kasinathan told The Hindu.

Earlier, the cane growers here staged a demonstration outside the RDO’s office in Mayiladuthurai.

THANJAVUR: Sugarcane farmers staged a demonstration near railway station in Thanjavur on Tuesday demanding fixing of Rs. 4,000 per tonne as price for sugarcane by the Government.

Kakkarai Sugumar, President of Sugarcane Farmers Association, led the agitation. The farmers said that banks should provide a finance of Rs. 60,000 an acre for planting sugarcane. This loan should be interest-free. For raising ratoon, Rs. 50,000 should be provided as loan per acre. Sugar mills should disburse the amount for harvested sugarcane and supplied to them within 15 days after the cutting order was issued.