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Rajendra Prasad Mohapatra

Unseasonal rain has added to the woes of Dungripali farmers in Sonepur district who are already hassled over delay in procurement and lifting of paddy from various mandis in the district.

As per reports, the farmers have received tokens to sell their crops at Sukha Mandi. However, their paddy is yet to be procured due to the absence of millers. Making things worse, hundreds of paddy sacks have been drenched in the unseasonal rain pouring in since Wednesday.

Farmers are forced to spend sleepless nights outside the mandi under the open sky braving the biting cold and inclement weather to protect their produce from unseasonal rain and also anti-social elements.

“We have stocked our paddy at the mandi after receiving tokens. But our produce is yet to be procured. We have no other alternative but to protect our paddy by spending sleepless nights for the last 15 days,” said a farmer at Sukha Mandi.

“Despite our best efforts, several paddy sacks have been drenched. We are helpless now. We have no money to repay our loans as our products are yet to be sold,” he said.

Most of the farmers are also afraid that their tokens might lapse due to the inordinate delay in the paddy procurement process.

“It is becoming difficult to protect our paddy from rain. We are also in urgent need of money to start cultivation again. We request the district administration to start procurement and lifting of paddy as soon as possible,” said another farmer.

Meanwhile, the secretary of Sukha mandi said that he has requested the district administration to address the issue soon.

“We are unable to procure the paddy due to shortage of vehicles. Hopefully, the issue will be addressed and the procurement process will start soon,” he said.

(Edited by Pradeep Singh)

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