Agri Business

Paddy procurement season opens on a disappointing note for farmers

KV Kurmanath Hyderabad | Updated on November 23, 2020

Only 10% of centres open in Telangana, allege farmers

What started as a good year is turning into a problematic one for paddy farmers in Telangana. The State, under the maiden regulated cropping system, grew paddy in over 50 lakh acres, including 20 lakh acres of super fine variety.

Farmers have alleged that the procurement season has begun on a disappointing note as a low number of procurement centres have opened so far. Backed by good rains and irrigation facilities, farmers expected a good harvest this season. Their hopes, however, were dashed as heavy rains hit the State, damaging the crop in over 5 lakh acres.

One week post harvesting season, the government is yet to open the procurement centres. “Only 10 per cent of the promised 6,700 centres are opened. In a week, the harvesting will be in a peak and we can expect huge quantities of paddy getting ready for procurement,” said S Malla Reddy, a Telangana Rythu Sanghama leader.

“Encouraged by the State government’s advice, the farmers have grown super fine varieties in about 20 lakh acres. But now they are confronted with the same price that the regular Grade-A variety gets (₹1,880 a quintal),” he said.

Demand for compensation

He urged the government to announce a price of ₹2,500 a quintal to compensate for the efforts that the farmers had put in. “At least, they should give the ₹200 incentive that Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao had announced. It is unfortunate that it (the State Government) is going back on its promise,” he said. The Chief Minister had alleged that the Centre had barred the States from paying additional price to the farmers as they procured the produce.

Expecting a bumper crop, the Telangana government had set a target to procure 70 lakh tonnes of paddy from this kharif season as against 45 lakh tonnes in the kharif season previous year.

The State is expected to produce 121 lakh tonnes of paddy this season. The paddy area in the State doubled this year. As against the season normal of 27.25 lakh acres, the farmers grew the crop in 53.33 lakh acres.

Published on November 23, 2020

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