Special Correspondent

Farmers' association forwards plea to Government

NAGAPATTINAM: The Federation of Farmers' Associations of Thanjavur, Nagapattinam and Tiruvarur districtshas urged the Government to procure paddy with moisture content up to 24 per cent. The kuruvai paddy of several farmers in the Cauvery delta region was affected due to the recent rain.

Arupathy Kalyanam, general secretary of the association, appealed to Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi on Friday to procure paddy with moisture content up to 24 per cent.The Government should not make any price cut for the moisture content up to 24 per cent and also for the damaged, discoloured and sprouted paddy.

Mr. Kalyanam pointed out that the minimum support price offered for paddy was very poor, Rs. 650 a quintal for grade A and Rs. 620 a quintal for common variety, which included an incentive of Rs. 40 a quintal. He said that the price of cattle-feed was now quoted at Rs.750 a quintal in the market and pointed out that paddy price should be fixed at Rs.1,400 a quintal because of high cost of cultivation.

He urged the Government to take steps to install paddy dryers at the direct purchase centres of the Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation during rainy season and pointed out that before the establishment of the same in 1971, the Food Corporation of India procured the paddy after drying at its dryer units.