Traders from syndicate, fleece cotton farmers
Cotton farmers allege that the cotton traders are forming syndicate to pay low price for the produce at the purchase centres.
Asifabad: Cotton farmers allege that the cotton traders are forming syndicate to pay low price for the produce at the purchase centres. Cotton is the major crop cultivated by Girijan farmers of the district where it is cultivated in about one-and-a-half lakh acres. The Girijan farmers say that they are not getting remunerative price for their produce as the marketing officials are not purchasing cotton at the marketing yards. However, the marketing yards denied the allegation.
The farmers say that they are compelled to go to ginning mills to sell their produce where they are paid low price for their produce exploiting their helplessness. “The marketing yards at Khammam, Warangal, Jammikunta and Adilabad are purchasing cotton at Rs 4,800 per quintal whereas the ginning mills at Vankidi, Asifabad and Jainur are paying only Rs 3,800 per quintal,” Gaddala Venkanna of Kommugudem village in Asifabad mandal said.
Venkanna of Rampalli lamented that the farmers were at the receiving end due to syndicate by ginning mills. He alleged that the marketing officials were not taking any precautions to extend remunerative price for cotton farmers. Apart from low price, the ginning mills are deducting Rs 50 per quintal in the name of moisture in cotton though there is no testing for measuring the same.
The farmers also said that they were being cheated in weighing with the help of tampered weighing machines. They pointed out that there would be a difference of at least three to four quintals between the weighing machines at the weigh bridge and ginning mills resulting in loss of several thousands of rupees. They said that at some ginning mills there were no electronic weighing machines.
In a few remote villages, zero business traders are setting up cotton purchasing centres causing losses to the marketing department. The marketing officials are turning a Nelson’s eye to these trading, Venkatesh of Asifabad alleged. In spite of the troubles being faced by the farmers, the Cotton Corporation of India is not coming forward to buy cotton from farmers to provide remunerative price to the produce.
District Marketing Officer Venkateswarlu told The Hans India that the farmers were not bringing cotton to the marketing yards resulting in loss of income to the yards from sales. He pointed out that the ginning traders purchased five lakh quintals of cotton in Asifabad while the farmers sold only 24,000 quintals of cotton at the market yard. At Kagaznagar market, 94 quintals of cotton was sold while it was only 12 quintals at Vankidi market, he added.
By Thotla Chinna Anjaiah