Punjab okays paddy procurement arrangements

With the state expected to produce 191 lakh metric tons of paddy, the Punjab Cabinet, presided over by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, on Friday approved the Punjab Custom Milling Policy for Kharif 2021-22 for the conversion of paddy procured by state procurement agencies into custom milled rice and its delivery into the Central pool.

A spokesperson for the Chief Minister’s office said the marketing season would start from October 1 and the operations would be completed by December 15.

During the season, the paddy so procured would be stored in eligible rice mills situated in the state.

The policy provides for timely linking of the rice mills to the procurement centres as per the purchase centre allotment list issued by the Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department. The paddy would be stored at the rice mills as per their entitlement, and the agreement executed between the state agencies and the rice millers.

The Cabinet also approved the arrangements for the procurement of 191 lakh metric tons of paddy keeping in view the actual production of paddy in the state in the last year.

Accordingly, arrangements are being made for availing Cash Credit Limit (CCL) of Rs 42,012.13 crore as required to procure 95 per cent shares allocated to the state procuring agencies.

The Centre has fixed the minimum support price (MSP) for common variety of paddy as Rs 1,940 per quintal and for grade ‘A’ variety paddy as Rs 1,960 per quintal.