Maharashtra traders plan stir over action against below-MSP purchase

By: | Published: August 28, 2018 2:20 AM

Traders across Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) in Maharashtra who deal in pulses, soybean and oilseeds are planning to stop purchases from farmers.

There are some 15-20 large and small markets in Ahmednagar region. Markets in Jamkhed, Jalna and Khamgaon were also closed on Monday. (Representational photo)

Traders across Agriculture Produce Market Committees (APMCs) in Maharashtra who deal in pulses, soybean and oilseeds are planning to stop purchases from farmers following the government decision to make purchase of any farm commodity below the official minimum support price (MSP) by even a private trader an offence attracting a one-year jail term and a fine of Rs 50,000.

Latur APMC remained closed on Monday after traders sought guarantee of protection against this decision by the government from the APMC chairman Lalit Kumari Shah. “The market was shut today with traders refusing to make purchases this morning despite my efforts. They were seeking a guarantee that no legal action would be taken against them, something that I cannot guarantee. Most small and big markets in Ahmednagar region were shut today and all are waiting for the government resolution to decide their next line of action,” he told FE.

There are some 15-20 large and small markets in Ahmednagar region. Markets in Jamkhed, Jalna and Khamgaon were also closed on Monday.

When contacted Sachin Wankhede, secretary, Dhamangaon APMC, Amravati district said that although the market remained open on Monday, he had received a letter from the local traders stating that they will stop purchase of commodities because they fear legal action by the government. According to sources, traders at several places like Solapur, Akola, Latur and Amravati who deal in pulses like ‘Tur’, ‘Soyabean’ and oil seeds are planning to stop purchase of agricultural produce from farmers as prices have plunged below the MSP fixed by the government.

At present Tur ( Arhar) is trading in markets such as Akola, Latur and Amravati at Rs 3,600-3,700 per quintal – well below the Centre’s MSP of Rs 5,675 for 2018-19 or even last year’s Rs 5,450.

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