With Monsoon approaching, snail-pace paddy procurement leaves Odisha farmers in lurch

Monsoon advancement, snail-pace paddy procurement leave Odisha farmers in lurch

Monsoon advancement, snail-pace paddy procurement leave Odisha farmers in lurch

While the Odisha government is making tall claims of taking all necessary measures for hassle-free paddy procurement in the State, it seems the claims are going up in smoke as the ground reality tells a different story altogether.

The advancement of the Monsoon and the delay in the procurement process have left farmers across the state in lurch.

Meet Jasobanta Majhi, a divyang farmer from Kalahandi. Majhi has come to Kotagaon mandi with 40 quintals of produce for procurement. But the tardy procurement forced him to sit under the sun and spend sleepless nights safeguarding his produce.

Recently, several farmers had also launched a protest and blocked Mandal-Kotagaon road demanding early procurement following a brief spell of rain. Later, Kalampur Tehsildar reached the spot and assured that 14,000 quintal paddy will be procured at the earliest following which the farmers withdrew their protest.

“We have been waiting for the last 15-20 days. There is no arrangement to protect our produce from the rain,” an agitating farmer said.

“It is very saddening to see the farmers’ produce lying in the open. Once the monsoon rain drenches the paddy, the hard work of farmers will be ruined. So we demand an expeditious procurement,” said Sujit Meher, a supporter of agitating farmers.

Commenting on the development Rudramohan Nayak, Kalampur Tehsildar said, “Like other places, we will receive the farmers serially, distribute sacks and lift the paddy.  ” 

The situation is no different in Bargarh, the rice bowl of Odisha. More than 25000 quintals of paddy are lying in the open. With the expiry dates of tokens approaching, the farmers have threatened to launch a protest.

On the other hand, the district civil supplies officer has said that procurement is underway smoothly at 178 market yards under Attabira, Padmapur and Bargarh.

“The expiry date of tokens is approaching but our produce is yet to be procured. If the administration fails to lift our produce on time, we will gherao collector’s office and spill the paddy there,” said Kuna Rana, a farmer.

“As per the latest update, so far 39.40 lakh quintals of paddy have been procured in 178 market yards. We will conclude the procurement process before the validity of tokens expires,” said Dasarathi Soren, district civil supplies officer.

  • Reported by:
  • Deepak Sharma , Ingeet Panda