SC clears decks for payment of dues of UP sugarcane farmers

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New Delhi, Jan 18 (UNI) The Supreme Court today stayed the order of the Allahabad High Court, staying the payment of dues to sugarcane farmers in Uttar Pradesh at the rate of Rs 125 per quintal.

A bench comprising Chief Justice K G Balakrishnan and Justices G P Mathur and R V Raveendran also told the sugar factories to clear the dues of the farmers which is about Rs 1100 crore.

Counsel for sugar factory owners however contended that their clients had already paid upto 90 per cent of the dues.

The apex court fixed February 12 as the next date of hearing but made it clear that farmers will have to be paid their dues.

The seasonal procurement committee of the state government was not competent to fix the procurement price for sugarcane growers.

Another bench is also hearing the petition challenging the fixation of sugarcane prices at Rs 110 per quintal.

Another petition is also pending in Allahabad High Court related to the state government's decision of fixing procurement price for the current year at Rs 81 per quintal.

UNI AKS/SC KK RP BD1520

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