Nearly one-fourth of the paddy procurement for the Central pool has taken place from Punjab. Following this, Punjab farmers got around ₹36,706.88 crore. The procurement was done at the MSP (minimum support price) value of ₹1,960 per quintal.

Giving details of State-wise foodgrains procurement at MSP for the Central pool during the kharif marketing season (KMS) of 2021-22, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Union Minister of State for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, produced government’s data showing that 739.11 lakh tonnes (lt) of paddy valued at ₹1.44 lakh crore (on the MSP value of ₹1,960 per quintal) were procured during 2021-22.

Of this, the share of Punjab was at 187.28 lt (that is 25.33 per cent of the total procurement) valued at ₹36,706.88 crore. Chhattisgarh was another major contributor to the Central pool at 92.01 lt valued at ₹18,033.96 crore. This was followed by Telangana at 70.22 lt (₹13,763.12 crore), Uttar Pradesh at 65.53 lt (₹12,843.88 crore), and Odisha at 56.98 lt (₹11,168.08 crore).

The minister said Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Tripura and Rajasthan recorded highest-ever paddy procurement during KMS 2021-22, she said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha.

Parboiled rice

In a separate reply, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti said States were informed that the FCI (Food Corporation of India) will not be in a position to accept parboiled rice during KMS 2021-22 due to the burgeoning stock level of parboiled rice in the Central pool.

FCI procured 47.49 lt of parboiled rice from Telangana during KMS 2020-21 against 44.71 in KMS 2019-20. FCI procured 17.74 lt (16.05 lt) from Odisha, and 15.95 lt (26.38 lt) from Chhattisgarh during the period.

She said after meeting the requirements of States for the targeted public distribution system and other welfare schemes, only the excess/surplus stocks procured by the State governments and their agencies are handed over to FCI in the Central pool in the form of white (raw) rice or parboiled rice to meet the overall consumption requirement of the country in terms of a memorandum of understanding signed between the Centre and decentralized procurement States.

Steel demand

Meanwhile, the Steel Ministry has said the rapid urbanisation is likely to increase the demand of steel and metals in the country.

In a reply in the Lok Sabha on Wednesday, Ram Chandra Prasad Singh, Union Steel Minister, said the production of finished steel was 96.20 million tonnes (mt) in 2020-21 compared with the production of 102.62 mt in 2019-20. Consumption of steel was at 94.89 mt in 2020-21 against 100.17 mt in 2019-20.

Production of zinc and lead increased to 7.15 lt and 2.14 lt in 2020-21, from 6.88 lt and 1.81 lt in 2019-20, respectively. Production of aluminium stood at 36.16 lt (36.56 lt), and refined copper at 3.64 lt (4.08 lt) during the period.