Paddy from different states proceed to succeed in Punjab mandis, farm unions ask why

Written by Anju Agnihotri Chaba
| Jalandhar |

November 15, 2020 9:27:43 pm

For previous a number of years, Punjab has been procuring extra paddy than it produces.(Representational)

A mean of three to 4 lakh tonnes of paddy is reaching mandis in Punjab on a regular basis at the same time as state has procured almost 196 lakh tonne of the kharif produce, almost 200 lakh tonne greater than the estimate that the state had projected based mostly on almost 27.36 lakh hectares of space beneath rice crop.

This, nonetheless, is just not a brand new phenomenon. For previous a number of years, Punjab has been procuring extra paddy than it produces. It’s as a result of a number of merchants and rice shellers illegally deliver into Punjab a considerable amount of paddy purchased at decrease charges from Uttar Pradesh and Bihar Punjab, to be offered on the minimal assist value (MSP) in mandis right here.

Whereas such unlawful ‘import’ of non-Basmati sorts of paddy is nothing new, this 12 months the sheer quantity of it highlights how acute is the issue.

This was one of many motive why Punjab Meeting final month handed the Farmers’ Produce Commerce and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) (Particular Provisions and Punjab Modification) Invoice, 2020. The state Invoice, amongst others, negate the Farmers’ Produce Commerce and commerce (Promotion and facilitation) Act 2020 formulated by Centre. The central regulation is the premise for the Union authorities’s bold ‘One Nation One Market’ programme. The regulation goals to advertise barrier-free inter-state commerce and commerce of farmer’s produce outdoors the bodily premises of markets or deemed markets notified beneath numerous state agricultural produce market legislations.

The Punjab Invoice, which was handed over to Governor VPS Badnore to be forwarded to the President, has made procurement of paddy or wheat under their minimal assist costs (MSP) a felony offence inviting financial penalty and imprisonment of as much as three years.

Whereas the Invoice has not but been granted Presidential assent, questions are being raised as to why Punjab mandis are procuring paddy that’s being imported from different state, particularly at a time when state has moved to negate central legal guidelines.

The enactment of the central regulation is being opposed by the farmers in Punjab on the pretext that it’ll assist huge merchants and company homes, who’ve the capability and means of buying the grain from anyplace, even because the poor and small farmers aren’t even capable of go to mandis within the neighbouring districts to promote their produce due to heavy transportation cost. In addition they consider that the Centre would steadily eliminate the MSP system.

“We had been apprehending that the Centre’s legal guidelines aren’t in favour of farmers however in favour of massive merchants and corporates. Our fears have come true. The massive merchants are procuring paddy at charges starting from Rs 1,200 to Rs 1,400 per quintal from farmers in Bihar and UP to promote in Punjab’s mandis the place authorities companies procure the identical on the MSP of Rs 1,888 per quintal,” stated Bharti Kisan Union (Ugrahan) Normal Secretary Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan.

He reiterated that paddy from different states have been being delivered to Punjab by huge merchants and rice shellers and never by the farmers.

“When the state authorities has rejected central legal guidelines, then it ought to go by its personal laws and never permit entry of paddy from different states into Punjab as it’ll adversly have an effect on our farmers in the long term,” stated BKU (Dakaunda) basic secretary Jagmohan Singh. He stated that a couple of hundred vehicles carrying such paddy from different state that have been confiscated not too long ago have been only a fraction of the bigger unlawful commerce happening this time.

Punjab Arhtiya Affiliation president Ravinder Singh Cheema too alleged that “huge persons are concerned on this unlawful commerce” and added that whereas such paddy was being introduced in earlier too “the commerce was not at such a big scale”. He stated each state authorities has the obligation to care for the crop of their farmers and each Bihar and UP governments have failed to take action by not procuring the produce at MSP.

Vice-president, Punjab Mandi Board (PMB), Vijay Kalra, stated that such vehicles coming into into the borders of Punjab needs to be stopped and folks indulging in such commerce booked. “Reserving truck drivers or staff is not going to serve any objective,” he stated, including that rice shellers and officers of presidency departments coping with procurement should be taken to process if they’re permitting the sale of paddy from outdoors Punjab.

“We must always assist our authorities that took a daring resolution of negating the central legal guidelines moderately than indulging in petty advantages at the price of the state,” he including that the unlawful commerce will have an effect on Punjab’s farmers in future if the Centre begins placing sanctions on the Money Credit score Restrict (CCL). “MSP facility is for paddy from Punjab not for paddy from different states,” he stated including that on account of bulk arrival and buy of out of doors paddy, Punjab is dealing with the scarcity of gunny baggage.


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