Three more to be set up after equipment is purchased
As many as 10 centres will be opened in Bellary district to procure paddy at the minimum support price (MSP), according to B. Shivappa, Deputy Commissioner.
He told presspersons here on Thursday that seven out of the 10 procurement centres started functioning today at APMC yards in Bellary, Hadagali, Hagari Bommanahalli, Kampli and Sirguppa and in Kurgodu in Bellary taluk and Hatcholli in Sirguppa taluk.
Efforts are on to get electronic weighing machines, moisture testing equipment and the like before the three other centres are opened at Tekkalakota, Karur and Yemmiganur as demanded by the farmers.
“A” grade paddy, including Sona, Rajahamsa, IR 64, would be procured at Rs. 1,030 per quintal and other general variety of paddy at Rs. 1,000 per quintal.
In addition to the minimum support price, the State Government had agreed to give Rs. 100 per quintal of quality paddy, he said and added that Rs. 10 per bag would be given separately to the farmers.
Paddy growers had demanded Rs. 1,500 per quintal of “A” grade paddy and also underlined the need to withdraw the ban on export of several varieties, of which Sona, which is grown on a large scale in Bellary, Koppal and Raichur districts and also in the neighbouring districts of Andhra Pradesh, was one.
Mr. Shivappa said that paddy with a maximum moisture content of 17 per cent would be procured at these centres.
It was the responsibility of farmers to bring goods to the centre. Instruction had been passed on to the officials to procure paddy during the day, on first-come first-served basis in the interest of farmers.
He also said that a committee, headed by the Joint Director of Agriculture, had been constituted at the district level to make a study of the actual cost of cultivation and workout the minimum support price needed to be fixed.
The report of the committee would be sent to the Government.
He said that 3.60 lakh tonnes of paddy was expected as yield during this khariff season under which farmers have cultivated 72,113 hectares of land in the district.
Similarly, the expected production of jowar was around 28,346 tonnes, ragi 3,878 tonnes, maize 2.79 lakh tonnes, bajra 14,058 tonnes and minor millets 1,077 tonnes.
Manjunath, Deputy Director, Food, was present.