Minister Warns Of Stern Action If Irregularities Found In Paddy Procurement

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Bhubaneswar: Food Supply and Consumer Welfare minister Surya Narayan Patro on Monday warned millers and the Primary Agricultural Cooperative Society (PACS) officials of stern action in case of irregularities in paddy procurement.

Talking to mediapersons here, the minister said the district collectors have been instructed to take stern action against the millers and the PACS officials if they are found guilty of any irregularity during the procurement of paddy. The collectors have been asked to probe into the matter and arrest the millers and PACS officials and if necessary, seize their rice mill.

“Under the rules and provisions, the PACS cannot keep the paddy in its possession for more than 24 hours.” Patro added.

The procurement of paddy, which has already started in more than 23 districts, will begin in Ganjam district from December 15, he said, adding that the problems related to paddy procurement in Nuapada and Kalahandi districts have been resolved.

Briefing mediapersons earlier in the day, Congress spokesperson Tara Prasad Bahinipati had alleged that the paddy of the farmers is not being properly procured by the PACS and the millers at several mandis in the state.

“The farmers are harassed by the PACS officials and the millers, who are not paying them the actual price of the paddy at various pleas. We have asked the government to look into the matter in two days failing which the Congress will stage a statewide agitation,” he warned.

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