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Gujarat: Chana procurement resumes, officers say low farmer turnout

However, less number of farmers are turning up at procurement centres, officers said, adding farmers have sold their produce in open market due to good prices.

By: Express News Service | Rajkot |
May 29, 2021 12:41:21 am
According to GSCSCL data, 99 per cent farmers who have sold their chana to government has been paid their dues by the government. (Express Photo by Jasbir Malhi)

Chana procurement has resumed in the state after remaining suspended for more than a month due to restrictions imposed by the government in view of the second wave of Covid-19 pandemic and inclement weather this month. However, less number of farmers are turning up at procurement centres, officers said, adding farmers have sold their produce in open market due to good prices.

The Gujarat State Civil Supplies Corporation Limited (GSCSCL) has started reopening its 188 chana (gram) procurement centres across the state from May 24 onward as the government eased restrictions and inclement weather the state had witnessed under the influence of cyclone Tauktae cleared. “We have reopened six procurement centres in Jamnagar and four in neighbouring Devbhumi Dwarka. However, only about 30 per cent farmers are turning up at procurement centres with their produce after being sent SMS alerts about their turns. This is largely due to farmers having sold their chana in the open market after market prices drew parity with the government’s minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 5,100 per quintal in early April,” an officer of GSCSCL said.

As of Friday morning, GSCSCL, which is procuring gram from Gujarat on behalf of National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation Limited (Nafed), had sent SMS alerts to 1.67 lakh farmers out of total 3.68 farmers.

However, only 93,761 had actually turned up at the procurement centres and sold their harvest. The government procurement stood at 90,519 metric tonnes (MT) worth Rs 461.64 crore. “As of now, the original 90-day procurement window announced by the central government closes on June 5. However, a proposal has been moved to the Centre to extend this period to by one more month,” a top officer of GSCSCL said.

According to GSCSCL data, 99 per cent farmers who have sold their chana to government has been paid their dues by the government. A total of 3.81 lakh farmers had registered themselves with the government to sell their produce to the government at MSP this season. Of them, 13,110 registrations were blocked due to duplication and other reasons. The GSCSCL has been able to send SMS alerts to 45 per cent of eligible registered farmers but only around 25 per cent of the registered farmers have actually sold their produce to the government.

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