Koraput Farmers Allege Irregularities In Paddy Procurement
Koraput: At a time when the Odisha government is coming up with a series of initiatives for smooth paddy procurement in the State, allegations about irregularities in the farmers’ registration for the process have cropped up at several mandis in Kusumi and Kotpad blocks here in the district.
Many farmers of these blocks have alleged that the officials of the supply department have resorted to foul play to illegally register several ghost farmers leading to the irregularities.
“Many farmers from other blocks along with some ghost farmers have been registered at different mandis of Kusumi and Kotpad blocks. It is illegal to allow these farmers to participate in paddy procurement as this would delay procurement of paddy from genuine farmers,” said BijayBagha from Rabanaguda.
According to sources, while farmers from other areas are allowed to sell paddy at different mandis of these blocks, farmers of the area have been told to sell their products on different allotted dates in December, January and February.
“Our quota for selling of paddy has also been reduced making way for the outside farmers. Now we will be forced to resort to distress sale,” rued Nilambara Gadba, a farmer from Kusumi.
“Those people from whom we borrowed money are now asking us to pay them back. We have no other options left,” said Gadba.
Farmers of the area also expressed their concern for the upcoming Rabi crop season following the delay and irregularities in the procurement process.
“The Rabi season is approaching fast. If our paddy will be sold in February from where will we get money to start our crop again,” questioned KamalalochanGadba, another farmer from the area.
(Edited by Rashmi Ranjan Mohanty)