Amritsar, May 10, : Punjab today crossed the mark of 100 lakh metric tons of wheat procurement despite many hurdles faced due to delayed and shortest procurement season this year.
Adesh Partap Singh Kairon, minister of Food and Civil Supplies and Information Technology in a statement said that Punjab government had very smoothly and successfully almost completed the wheat procurement.
He said that state government has earned total revenue of Rs.1250 crores which is almost double of the collection made in previous year and an all time record. He said that a sum of about Rs.380 crores of tax was earned due to higher procurement and difference of revised MSP.
Kairon stated that center government had fixed a target of 80 lakh MT for central pool from Punjab but has contributed 93.47 lakh MT so far. He said that with higher wheat production of 20 lakh MT, the farmers of state have earned an additional income of Rs.20,000 crores.
He said that except for year 2001-02 when total procurement was 105 lakh MT, this is the highest ever procurement in the state. He hoped that since arrival of wheat still continued, the procurement may set a new record. He said that untimely rains had delayed the harvesting season which resulted in heavy rush in the mandis in second half of April.
Kairon said that farmers didn't face any problem despite the fact that there was shortage of labour for handling and for lifting of stocks in the procurement centers. He added that no complaints regarding payment for their produce and any sort of corruption by field staff were received. He complimented the department and other agencies involved in operation for smooth procurement of wheat.
Kairon informed that Punjab has contributed a record 93.47 lakh MT wheat for central pool and procured 2.70 lakh MT for the state pool. The private traders have made meager purchase of 2.7 lakh tones against 6.26 lakh tones last year. The Food Corporation of India has procured only 10.14 lakh MT of wheat.
The minister further said that highest wheat procurement of 1141003 tones was made in Ferozepur district followed by Sangrur district, which has procured 938850 tonnes. The detail of other districts is Amritsar (557338 tonnes), Tarn Taran (537495), Gurdaspur(521508), Kapurthala(347222), Jalandhar (470410), Hoshiarpur (217467), Nawanshehar( 176265), Patiala(792610), Barnala(376270), Ludhiana(834699), Fatehgarh Sahib( 258341), SAS Nagar (60535), Ropar(113726), Moga(598350), Faridkot(381653), Mukatsar(595722), Bathinda(582826) and Mansa( 436795). By Ravinder Singh Robin