Madhya Pradesh has had a bumper wheat harvest this rabi season. So much so, that now the state does not have enough gunny sacks to pack-up the procured wheat.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan called on Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution K.V. Thomas in New Delhi on Wednesday and complained about the shortage of gunny sacks the state was facing while packing its record wheat harvest.
Mr. Chauhan requested Mr. Thomas to ensure timely and adequate supply of gunny sacks from the ministry.
The CM also requested the food minister to “ask the Food Corporation of India to lift one lakh metric tonnes of procured wheat per week from the state”.
Mr. Thomas assured Mr. Chauhan of taking the matter up with the union textiles ministry to ensure regular and adequate supply of gunny sacks to the state.
The Madhya Pradesh CM told Mr. Thomas about the state's successful harvest of wheat-36 lakh metric tonnes till date and a total of 80 lakh metric tonnes estimated to be procured by May 20.
According to Mr. Chuhan, “wheat procurement arrangements are unnecessarily getting disturbed due to non-supply of requisite number of gunny bags by the Union Government”.
The State Government has relied on a completely computerised “e-procurement” system-from registration of farmers up to deposit of payments in farmers’ bank accounts-and has been offering an additional bonus of Rs.100 over and above the Minimum Support Price of Rs.1285 for wheat.
Mr. Chauhan said that besides the shortage of gunny bags, another major problem the state faced was regarding the FCI. He informed Mr. Thomas that the FCI was “avoiding lifting of its quota of procured wheat” which needed to be completed by May 20, before the setting in of the monsoon.
The CM alleged M.P was facing injustice from the centre as the FCI was lifting much larger quantities of wheat from other states while avoiding lifting its quota of 1 lakh tonnes wheat per week from Madhya Pradesh.