Chandigarh, Oct 11 (UNI) In Punjab, government agencies and private millers made a record procurement of 3.72 lakh tonnes of paddy in a single day yesterday as total procurement during last 15 days touched 40.52 lakh tonnes.
According to an official spokesman, out of total procurement of 40.52 lakh tonnes of paddy in all the mandis of the state, government agencies had procured 29.52 lakh tonnes of paddy till last evening, which was 72.9 per cent of total procurement, whereas private millers had lifted 10.99 lakh tonnes (27.1 per cent) of paddy.
Amongst the state government agencies, Pungrain had procured 6.56 lakh tonnes (22.2 per cent) whereas Markfed procured 6.68 lakh tonnes (22.6 per cent). Punsup procured 7.94 lakh tonnes (26.9 per cent), PSWC procured 4.50 lakh tonnes (15.3 per cent) whereas PAIC was able to procure 3.47 lakh tonnes (11.8 per cent) of paddy.
The Central government agency FCI had been able to procure 36,576 tonnes which was just 1.2 per cent of the total purchase.
The spokesman added that Ferozepur district with 8.39 lakh tonnes of procurement was leading in procurement operations whereas Ludhiana district with 3.48 lakh tonnes of procurement was at second slot and Kapurthala district with 3.21 lakh tonnes of procurement ranked at third position.
The spokesman said that farmers of Punjab had been paid Rs 1209.15 crores for the paddy procured by government agencies alone during last 14 days. An amount of Rs 1,710.93 crores had already been allocated to different Districts Food Controllers to ensure timely payment to the farmers.
According to an official spokesman the Punjab government had already issued instructions to all agencies to release payments to the farmers within 72 hours of lifting paddy.
The spokesman said that to ensure smooth procurement and timely payments to the farmers during Kharif Season 2007-08, the state government had already got a cash credit limit of Rs 7,439 Crores sanctioned from Reserve Bank of India for the month of October.
The state government has set up 1,544 procurement centres and activated its total machinery to ensure smooth procurement of paddy, the spokesman added.