Senior officials of agriculture department revealed that cooperation minister Subhash Deshmukh, in a meeting held last week, directed officials to procure space from private warehouses for storing tur.
The government of Maharashtra will soon restart tur procurement which was stopped in some key regions of the state for want of storage space. Senior officials of agriculture department revealed that cooperation minister Subhash Deshmukh, in a meeting held last week, directed officials to procure space from private warehouses for storing tur. Procurement was stopped in Amravati, Buldhana and Akola regions of the state since the warehouses were already full with pulses procured during the previous season. Moreover, this season the government also procured soybean, moong and urad which also took up space, he added. The state marketing federation has been appointed as the sub-agent of Nafed for tur purchase in the state. Last year a record 75 lakh quintals of tur was purchased by the Centre and state across the country as part of procurement operations.
The Centre has granted permission to Maharashtra for the purchase of 44.60 lakh quintals from February 1. The state government began a registration drive for farmers from January 19 and some 1.17 lakh farmers have registered themselves for the drive. According to officials, there are plans to re-commence tur procurement from these areas once some storage space is acquired. Out of the total target, 117,63544 quintals has been procured by the Maharashtra State Marketing Federation (MSMF) from 1,45188 farmers while the Vidarbha Cooperative Marketing Federation has procured about b5,12,607 quintals of tur so far from 38,644 farmers. The Maharashtra federation has opened 168 centres for procurement of tur. In Vidarbha, 23 centres have been opened. Tur in Maharashtra has declined to Rs 4,200 per quintal while in Madhya Pradesh it is at Rs 3,800-3,900 per quintal.
Tur procurement has come under the lens in the state with the Maharashtra state marketing federation’s general manager (GM) Anil Deshmukh being suspended on Thursday over irregularities in the tur dal milling tender. The opposition NCP has demanded the resignation of co-operation, textile and marketing minister Deshmukh over the alleged scam, indicating it be worth Rs 2,000 crore.