The Rice Millers Welfare Association of Punjab has threatened an indefinite strike if its demands are not met by the state government by October 7.
Alleging that highly damaged paddy has been arriving in grain mandis of the state due to heavy rain,the association said that they would not store procured paddy in their mills if their demands are not heeded.
A meeting of the association was held in Jalandhar on Wednesday,in which millers from across the state participated.
After the hour-long meeting,president of the association Rakesh Jain told The Indian Express that their demands included joint custody of paddy by procurement agencies and mill owners. If not joint custody,then the government must place the paddy at its own premises.
Jain said that if the government wants to use millers premises for storing paddy,then both the millers and rice procuring agencies should be made equally responsible for custody.
When the government is saying that rice millers have embezzled paddy worth Rs 4,000 crore for the years 2011-12 and 2012-13,then why is the Punjab government insisting that paddy be stored in the sole custody of millers only? If the government wants to use the millers premises,then it must chalk out a policy or store paddy on its own plinth areas.