*Local procurement saves crores spent on freight
JAMMU, July 5: The Food Corporation of India has procured record 24,308 MT of wheat on Minimum Support Price (MSP) during the Rabi Marketing Season (RMS) 2021-22 in Jammu and Kashmir despite the pandemic situation.
Addressing a press conference here at FCI Headquarters, DGM, FCI Jammu Region, Siddharth said, “FCI in collaboration with the J&K Government procured 24,308 MT of wheat in RMS 2021-22 by extending benefits of MSP to 4127 farmers with a total payment of 48 crores directly into their accounts, despite COVID-19 pandemic.
He said there was nil procurement of wheat in J&K Region during last eight years except for a meager quantity of 11 MT in RMS 2020-21 from three farmers. He said local procurement is not only benefitting the farmers but has also saved crores of rupees by eliminating freight charges as earlier, wheat and rice were procured from Punjab for consumption.
For the procurement of wheat, the DGM said a total of 21 centres/mandis were opened in J&K with 09 centres in Kathua, 10 in Jammu and 02 in Samba district. With respect to the Paddy procurement under Kharif Marketing Season (KMS) 2020-21, the DGM said that 38,119 MT Paddy has been procured from 7385 farmers who have been paid a total MSP of Rs 72 crores during COVID-19 pandemic. He further said that for the procurement of paddy, a total of 22 centres/mandis have been opened with 08 in Kathua, 13 in Jammu and 01 in Samba district.
Emphasizing on the achievements made under PMGKAY, he said that for the UT of J&K, Government of India has allocated monthly allocation of 36205 MT (Rice- 25714 MT and wheat- 10490 MT) for the intended beneficiaries of 72.41 lakh and for the UT of Ladakh, Government of India has allocated monthly allocation of 719 MT (Rice- 212 MT and Wheat- 506 MT) for intended beneficiaries of 1.43 lakhs.
While emphasizing on the various commitments of the Government of India, he said that the man and machinery of J&K and Ladakh FCIs are always fully geared up to ensure timely delivery of stocks especially in winters and during this pandemic. He further added that with the coordinated efforts of FCI, the allotted food grains for July 2021 to September 2021 under PMGKAY-IV will be supplied to the Government of J&K and Ladakh within the time period set by the Central Government or well before it.
He also said that special efforts are being made at every level by FCI J&K and Ladakh to create awareness and publicity of the PMGKAY scheme through IEC activities.
Deputy Director, Press Information Bureau and Regional Outreach Bureau, J&K and Ladakh, Neha Jalali and Abhishek Sinha, Divisional Manager, J&K, FCI were also present during the press conference.