Agri Business

Easing of pulses import has not affected sowing, says Minister Anupriya Patel

Our Bureau Mangaluru | Updated on August 04, 2021

Estimated area under sowing was 13.75 million ha in 2020-21 against 13.64 million ha in 2019-20

The recent decision of the government to shift the import of tur, urad and moong from restricted category to free category for a limited period has not impacted the sowing of pulses in the country.

In a written reply in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, the Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Anupriya Patel, said the changes have been made in import policy by shifting tur (pigeon pea), urad (black matpe) and moong (green gram) from restricted category to free category for a limited period from May 15 to October 31 to enhance the domestic availability and smoothen the inflow of pulses import.

The minimum support price (MSP) of pulses such as tur, moong and urad for the season 2021-22 has been fixed at ₹6,300, ₹7,275 and ₹6,300 per quintal, respectively.

She said the wholesale price of gram, tur, urad and moong, etc saw fluctuations during the past two months, but on the whole, the prices of pulses have been prevailing higher than MSP during the period.

Stating that there is no adverse impact on sowing of these pulses, the Minister said the estimated area covered under sowing was 13.75 million hectares in 2020-21 and 13.64 million hectares in 2019-20.

The Minister said the import of pulses is allowed and the import quantity is determined taking into consideration overall availability and price situation to protect farmers’ and consumers’ interest.

Rubber production

To a separate question on rubber sector, the Minister said Rubber Board is implementing the scheme ‘Sustainable and Inclusive Development of Natural Rubber Sector’ for development of the natural rubber sector in the country. The main focus of the scheme is to increase domestic rubber production by bringing more area under rubber cultivation. The scheme also aims at bridging the prevalent gap between production and consumption of natural rubber, reducing the import of natural rubber and make India self-sufficient to meet the demand of natural rubber in the country.

For the fiscal 2021-22, ₹190 crore has been allocated for implementation of the scheme.

Stating that a total area of 35,700 hectares has been brought under rubber plantation since 2017-18 onwards, she said the planting target is 13,500 hectares for 2021-22.

Tea auctions

Replying to another query on tea sector, the Minister said India produced 1283.03 million kgs of tea during 2020-21. Of this, the share of Assam, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu stood at 626.23 million kgs, 396.05 million kgs, and 160.04 million kgs, respectively.

On tea auctions, she said auction of tea is operated through pan-India e-auction platform with seven auction centres, and the newly established Jorhat auction platform.

Auctions are conducted as per the procedure and rules framed by Tea Board. The auction rules for pan-India e-auction platform are uniform both in North and South Indian auction centres except lot size, divisibility, etc. that are dependent on availability of tea in North India and South India. Auctions on the Jorhat Auction Platform are governed by a separate set of rules wherein no brokers are involved.

She said that 25 brokers are involved in the pan-India e-auction platform. No broker is involved in the Jorhat auction platform, she added.

Published on August 04, 2021

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