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Middlemen exploit paddy farmers in Srikakulam

Middlemen exploit paddy farmers in Srikakulam
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Middlemen and traders are exploiting paddy farmers in Srikakulam district as government is yet to start paddy purchasing centres PPCs even after...

Srikakulam: Middlemen and traders are exploiting paddy farmers in Srikakulam district as government is yet to start paddy purchasing centres (PPCs) even after harvesting of paddy crop started one month ago.

District officials planned to start 122 PPCs this year in all 38 mandals to procure paddy directly from farmers. Due to delay in its arrangements, middlemen are started procurement directly from farmers at thrashing floors.

Kharif harvesting works started three weeks ago and farmers are reaping padding at their fields by adopting paddy thrashing machines. Paddy crop is being harvested in an extent of 2.33 lakh acres so far, as per agricultural officials’ estimations in the district, total cultivated area is 5.50 lakh acres in the district during current kharif season.

As per government fixed rates for grade-1 variety, minimum support price (MSP) is Rs 1,432 for 80 kgs bag and Rs 1,400 as MSP for normal variety. Traders from other districts are moving around the district with the local middlemen and purchasing paddy produce from the farmers at low price than MSP.

“We have sold our paddy produce for Rs 1,200 for 80 kgs bag to local traders as government yet to start PPC in our area,” Ch Lakshunnaidu, a farmer of Ponduru mandal told this newspaper.

“We will soon start PPCs across the district to procure paddy,” district manager (DM) for civil supplies, V Mohanbabu told The Hans India.

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