Bathinda, October 19
In a bid to get better prices for the produce, farmers from Punjab, especially from Bathinda, Mansa and Sangrur, have now started taking perds to mandis in Haryana. The development has irked arthiyas, laborers and rice millers as it is causing them “significant” losses.
“Growers are free to sell their crop anywhere”
There is a loss of revenue for the state, but according to the law farmers cannot be restricted. They are free to sell their products anywhere in the country, if the state allows them. — Rajnish Goel, Mandi District Officer, Bathinda
Moreover, the state government loses out on the revenue collected in the form of market fee paid by farmers during the procurement of fields.
The minimum support price (MSP) for paddy this year is Rs 2,060 per quintal. While the basmati variety-1509 fetches Rs 2,500-3,000 per quintal in the local market, farmers sell it to private players for Rs 3,600 per quintal. Similarly, new premium variety and basmati variety-1121 are selling for Rs 3,800-4,000 per quintal in Punjab. However, these varieties fetch a price of Rs 4,500 per quintal in the mandis of Fatehabad, Ratia, Tohana and Panchkula in Haryana.
One variety of parmal even fetches Rs 4,500-4,700 per quintal in Haryana.
Sources said other varieties of nuts are being procured by government agencies in Punjab, but basmati and parmal varieties fetch a higher price in Haryana.
Sources said apart from better price for their produce, farmers also had the freedom to sell paddy even with high moisture content in Haryana. Unlike mandis in Punjab where rice is procured within the permissible moisture content limit of 17 per cent, farmers easily sell their produce with above 20 to 22 per cent moisture in Haryana markets.
From some areas of Mansa district, nearly 70 percent of paddy has made its way to Haryana so far.
Munish Babi Dhanewalia, president of Mansa’s Arhtiya Association, has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the issue.
Dhanevalia said, “Unlike Punjab, there is no purchase limit for rice millers in Haryana, so it is convenient for farmers to sell their produce and get payment in a hassle-free manner there. Besides, private buyers in Haryana are also buying paddy that is slightly above the moisture content limit set by the government.”
Mahan Goyal, president of the Rice Millers’ Association, said, “Both parmali and basmati varieties from Punjab are being sold in Haryana and if it continues, then almost 15 per cent of the production will move out of the state, causing a significant loss of revenue to the government.”
Members of District Rice Millers Association and Arhtiya Mansa District Association have written to Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann regarding the issue and sought his immediate intervention to resolve it.
AAP legislators Budh Ram and Gurpreet Singh Bhanavali have urged farmers not to sell their produce in Haryana as it causes financial loss to the state. They have assured the traders that they will take up the issue of KO and try to resolve it.