Sambalpur: Expressing dissatisfaction over the delay in paddy procurement in Bargarh district, the farmers of Godbhaga area of district brought their paddy to the market yard and kept it there for sale on Wednesday, a week before the scheduled start date of paddy procurement on November 21.
The farmers under the banner of the Odisha Rajya Krushak Sangathan reached the market yard in a rally with 1,040 bags of paddy in 7 tractors and held a meeting there. Later, they asked the staff, who were present in the market yard, to open the gate, and kept their crop for sale there.
Farmer leader Birendra kar said, we demand the district administration to start the paddy procurement on Wednesday itself. In the district level procurement meeting, which was held on October 27, we had demanded to begin the paddy procurement in the district on November 15. The district administration assured us that they would consider our proposal. But after 3 days, the district administration unilaterally took the decision to begin the paddy procurement from November 21. But we are opposed to the decision of the district administration, and as per our proposal, we took the paddy to the market yard on November 15, he said.
Kar said, the district administration unilaterally decided to begin it from November 21. But the fact is that around 30% of the crop has already been harvested in our area, he said and questioned where the farmers will take their produce now.
“There is also prediction of low-pressure induced rain. But the farmers here do not have the space to store the paddy. Under this condition, the delay in paddy procurement will force the farmers to sell paddy at underrates,” said Kar and demanded the government to begin the paddy procurement immediately.
Civil Supply officer (CSO), Bargarh, Dasrathi Soren said, as per the official decision, the paddy procurement will begin from November 21 in the district. However, the Regulated Market Committee (RMC) will take a decision regarding the security arrangement of the paddy kept by the farmers in Godbhaga market yard.