Raipur (Chhattisgarh) [India], November 29 (ANI): As many as 21,29,764 farmers have registered so far to sell paddy in Chhattisgarh as the government purchase commences from December 1, with the state estimating a higher minimum support price (MSP) for the produce than last year.
There is a jump of around three lakh in the number of farmers from 2019-20, when 18.38 lakh farmers sold a record 83.94 lakh metric tonnes of paddy, according to the state government.
This time, the paddy was sown on more than 27,59,385 hectares of land, as per an official statement from the state government on Sunday.
"This year, the number of farmers registering for selling paddy has crossed 21.29 lakh. Due to the farmer-friendly policies of Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel, both the area under farming and the number of farmers have increased in the last two years. In two years, the area under paddy has increased from 19.36 lakh hectare to 22.68 lakh hectare and the number of farmers has increased from 12,06,000 to 18,38,000. In this way, there is an increase of 3,32,000 hectares in paddy-sowing area and 6.32 lakh in the number of farmers," the official statement read.
In 2017-18, 56.85 lakh metric tonnes of paddy was purchased in the state at the minimum support price. Over the next two years, this figure reached over 80 lakh metric tonnes each time. Considering the number of farmers registered to sell paddy this year and the area under paddy, the support price is estimated to be higher than last year.
"Regarding this, all possible arrangements are being ensured by the state government. Despite the lack of gunny bags for the procurement of paddy, the government is engaged in its management. All arrangements are being made for the convenience of the farmers at the paddy procurement centres," it stated.
According to the official statement, CM Bhupesh Baghel waived off the agricultural loan of about Rs 9,000 crore of 17,82,000 farmers in Chattisgarh until now.
"The compensation amount for the acquisition of agricultural land has been increased to four times from double, along with the waiving of irrigation tax of Rs 244.18 crore, which over 17 lakh farmers of the state owed for years. More than five lakh farmers of the state are being given relief of about Rs 900 crore annually by providing electricity at a free and subsidised rate," it added.
This comes amid a farmers' protest in the national capital against the three new farm laws, which they fear would dismantle the MSP and agricultural produce market system. (ANI)