Assam chief minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Monday reviewed the paddy procurement mechanism of the Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department and other state agencies at his conference room at Janata Bhawan.
He emphasized on strengthening of procurement system of paddy from the state farmers and providing them the minimum support price (MSP) of the central government.
Saying that there was urgent need to increase procurement of paddy from the state farmers to meet the 70 lakh metric tonne of rice requirement in the state per year, the chief minister also called for increasing rice production in the state.
He also asked the department to prepare a database of the farmers for receiving fund from central government schemes.
Sonowal directed Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board for surveying of suitable places for setting up procurement centres where farmers assemble and gather in large numbers.
He also instructed for locating the godowns of Assam State Warehousing Corporation in different districts which can be used for storing procured rice and other items.
Reiterating that farmers, FCI and different procurement agencies must have coordination among themselves to augment the paddy procurement, Sonowal said that Food and Civil Supplies Department must work closely with Agricultural Marketing Board till the time Civil Supply Corporations starts functioning.
The chief minister also exhorted the Food and Civil Supplies Department to explore opportunities for signing MoU with the central government for decentralized procurement (DCP) programme.
Notably, under the decentralized procurement scheme (DCP), the State Government itself undertakes direct purchase of paddy or wheat on behalf of Government of India.
Purchase centres are opened by the state governments and their agencies as per their requirements.
The surplus of food grains procured by DCP states, in excess of their requirement is handed over to FCI for the Central Pool stocks and deficit, if any, is met by FCI directly.
The chief minister also directed for sample survey for verifying the proper utilisation of money distributed among farmers of the state under Mukhya Mantri Krishi Sa Sajuli Yozana and PM Kishan Nidhi so that desired results in agricultural development could be achieved.
He also called for holding awareness meetings about different agricultural innovations in all districts and also to award ideal farmers who have been achieving success in agriculture.
The young generation would also be encouraged this way to take up farming in a big way, he said.
Legal adviser to the chief minister Shantanu Bharali, chief secretary Alok Kumar, additional chief secretary of Revenue and Disaster Management Kumar Sanjay Krishna, CEO of CMSGUY Mega Mission Society R T Jindal, principal secretary to the chief minister Sanjay Lohia were also present in the meeting among others.