Convince Centre on foodgrains procurement: Niranjan Reddy

Agriculture Minister S. Niranjan Reddy has criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party for its attempts to politicise foodgrains procurement. He demanded that the saffron party State leaders convince the Central Government and get assurance that it would purchase the foodgrains produced by farmers if they were committed to the farmers’ cause.

The Minister accused the BJP of indulging in “third class politics” to hoodwink people and gain mileage in the Huzurabad byelection slated for October 30. “The BJP leaders should stage dharnas to mount pressure on the Centre to procure the foodgrains produced in the State,” he said.

He dared the BJP leaders, especially its State president Bandi Sanjay Kumar and Union Minister G. Kishan Reddy, to resign if they failed to convince the Centre on procurement of foodgrains from farmers. The Minister said he would quit his post if his charges against the Centre, which was indulging in “double speak” when it came to procurement of food grain, were proved wrong.

He recalled how the State Government had been insisting on the Centre starting procurement of foodgrains through its agencies since the onset of the kharif season. Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao had personally met the Union Ministers concerned in this regard, but the Centre had remained unmoved over the State’s request.

The BJP was indulging in “cheap politics” with an eye on the Huzurabad bypoll where it had fielded Eatala Rajender who had been caught red-handed for his alleged irregularities and people knew this.

He recalled that Telangana was the only State which procured foodgrains, especially paddy cultivated in 63 lakh acres, from farmers opening centres in each village. The Centre however was dilly-dallying on the estimates submitted by the State Government. It had not deputed its teams to check the crop status in the State despite announcing that an inspection would be conducted to assess the State’s estimates.

“We are prepared even if the Centre conducts surveys on its own without the knowledge of the State in the villages it selects,” he said. The Centre had accepted to purchase 59 lakh tonne paddy produced during kharif from the State as against the State’s request to procure 1.35 crore tonnes.

The government was however committed to purchasing the entire produce from farmers and procurement centres were being opened across the State for this purpose. There was no cause of concern for the farmers as the government would purchase the entire commodity produced by them, he said and advised farmers not to get mislead by the BJP propaganda.

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Printable version | Dec 8, 2021 12:57:58 AM |

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