New Delhi/Bhubaneswar, March 16: A delegation of BJP MPs led by Union Petroleum & Natural Gas and Steel Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Tuesday met Union Food & Public Distribution Minister Piyush Goyal in New Delhi over irregularities in paddy procurement in the State. It came a day after BJD MPs’ meeting with the Union Minister over similar issue.
The delegation submitted a memorandum to Goyal to seek his personal intervention in directing the Govternmet of Odisha to expeditiously complete procurement of unsold paddy for the welfare of farmers in the State.
The delegation also sought support in resolving several issues related to paddy procurement in Odisha, including streamlining the entire process to ensure smooth, transparent and quick procurement of paddy at MSP for the benefit of paddy farmers in Odisha.
“The State Govt. of Odisha is misleading the farmers on issues of paddy procurement and has been conveniently trying to belie its own systematic failure in governance and in providing allied agricultural services to Odisha’s farmers,” read the memorandum.
“Despite this years’ better-than-expected harvest of paddy due to a favourable monsoon, farmers in Odisha are suffering due to State Govt. apathies, administrative inefficiencies and long-standing malpractices,” it said.
State Govt. of Odisha did not revise its ceiling of paddy procurement of 19 quintals for every acre of irrigated land and 13 quintals for every acre of non-irrigated land inspite of the bumper crop yield this season, it added.
“As a result thousands of farmers were left with unsold paddy which they had to sell at half the price of MSP fixed by the Centre, i.e ₹1868 per quintal. Farmers are also being forced to sell their harvest at throwaway price due to administrative failures of the Odisha Govt,” it further read.