The Maharashtra government has sent a proposal to the Centre seeking a grant of R100 per quintal for farmers who have sold onions at distress rates, state cooperation minister Subhash Deshmukh said.
Although the Centre has directed the Nafed to step in and commence onion procurement directly from farmers through a market intervention scheme in a bid to resolve the ongoing crisis in Nashik district, the onion hub of the country, the official notification is yet to be issued.
However, according to Deshmukh, more than onion procurement by Nafed, it is important to provide some succour to farmers who have been reeling under effect of a price fall following excess production in the state. This week, a farmer from Niphad region sold onions for R5 per quintal at Nashik drawing attention to the extent of the crisis. The minister said the proposal has been sent to the Centre seeking deposit of the money into farmers’ accounts. The state government will bear 50% of the grant, he said.