Odisha changes norms in food, procurement policy

September 25, 2018 12:00 am | Updated 03:45 am IST - BHUBANESWAR

More small, marginal farmers, share-croppers included in scheme

The Odisha government on Monday decided to facilitate entry of more small and marginal farmers and share-croppers into the procurement fold by bringing changes in the norms of food and procurement policy for the Kharif Marketing Season (KMS) 2018-19.

“The past practice of deducting towards personal consumption requirement at the rate of three quintals of paddy per member in the family of farmer for computation of marketable surplus of paddy is waived out from KMS 2018-19,” the Food Supplies and Consumer Welfare Department said in a press release after the Cabinet meeting.

The Cabinet, which approved the food and procurement policy for KMS 2019 to regulate all aspects of paddy and rice procurement during the ensuing KMS, decided that paddy (Kharif crop) will be procured between November, 2018 and April, 2019. The paddy (Rabi crop) will be procured from May to June, 2019.

A tentative target to procure 55 lakh tonnes of paddy from farmers has been fixed which will be around 37 lakh tonnes in terms of rice. Food Supplies & Consumer Welfare Minister has been authorised to revise the target if need arises.

The farmers would be paid the Minimum Support Price (MSP) fixed by the Central government at Rs. 1,750 per quintal for the common variety of paddy and Rs. 1,770 for Grade-A variety. The money would be directly paid into the bank accounts of farmers within three days of the procurement.

MoU with Centre

While 23 lakh tonnes of the procured rice will be pumped into the Public Distribution System in the State, the Food Corporation of India (FCI) will evacuate the remaining 14 lakh tonnes of rice to other States as per the MoU with the Centre.

Like previous year, paddy procurement process in all 308 procuring blocks will be conducted through paddy procurement automation system (P-PAS). All documents in connection with paddy procurement shall be generated from computer through P-PAS software to make the process hassle-free and transparent.

Farmer leader and activist Lingaraj, however, said that the State government should issue farmer identification cards to all farmers in order to bring more small and marginal farmers and share-croppers into the procurement fold.

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