Taking into consideration the beginning of harvest of samba paddy in pumpset-irrigated areas in Thanjavur and Tiruvarur districts, Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation (TNCSC) is planning to open new Direct Purchase Centres (DPCs) depending on the requirement.

Harvest has just commenced in pumpset-irrigated areas and it is likely to pick up in the first week of February. Since the paddy procurement will not be much due to failure of the samba crop in canal-irrigated areas, the TNCSC has decided to limit the number of DPCs on the basis of requirement.

The regional office of the TNCSC here has sent a proposal for opening 56 new DPCs apart from the existing 42 DPCs in the district. “The new DPCs will be spread over in all taluks while the maximum number will be opened in Orathanadu taluk where the harvest in pumpset-irrigated areas is more,” officials said.

The plan is to procure 5 lakh tonnes this year in the district against 6.5 lakh tonnes procured last year. With respect to Tiruvarur district, harvest is yet to pick up.

Regional office of TNCSC at Tiruvarur has sent proposal for opening 45 new centres in the first week of February. At present 26 centres are functioning in the district.

Samba has been raised under pumpset-irrigated areas on 1 lakh hectares in both districts.

Total coverage of samba in both pumpset-irrigated and canal-irrigated areas in the two districts is 2.75 lakh hectares.

Crop loss is heavy in canal-irrigated areas in both districts and the district administration has prepared estimates of 50 per cent loss, more than 50 per cent loss and total loss of crops under canal-irrigated areas in the district.

Farmers of both districts expect the State government to announce relief for the loss of crop.

TNCSC is paying Rs. 1,350 per quintal for A grade variety of paddy and Rs. 1,300 per quintal for common variety of paddy.