TO ENSURE CONTINUED SMOOTH WHEAT PROCUREMENT
- PUNJAB GOVERNMENT MAKES RECORD PAYMENT OF RS.14053.61 CRORES TO FARMERS TILL APRIL
Chandigarh, May 13-
Even as persistent efforts by Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday led to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) enhancing the state’s Cash Credit Limit (CCL) to a total of Rs. 20683 crores, the state government has reported a record payment of Rs.14053.61 crores to farmers for procurement in the current season till April this year.
The Chief Minister has directed the state procurement agencies to take immediate steps to ensure that all pending dues of the farmers are cleared promptly and timely payments are made for fresh procurement made during May, following the RBI move.
A government spokesperson said that in pursuance of Captain Amarinder Singh’s firm commitment to ensure prompt, hassle-free and smooth procurement of food grains, the state government made the highest ever payment to the tune of Rs. 14053.61 crore, to the farmers during the year, as against Rs. 5938.21 crore in April 2016 and Rs. 947.19 crore in April 2015.
While extending the earlier sanctioned limit of Rs. 17994.21 crore by another month from the previous date of April 30, 2017, the central bank has also sanctioned an additional limit of Rs. 2688.79 Crore for the May purchase, according to an official spokesperson. The RBI has also directed the state government to ensure that all its food credit accounts are always backed by fully paid stock value as per norms.
In a letter to Punjab’s Principal Secretary (Finance), the RBI said the CCL enhancement had been made to address the urgent need for payment for the ongoing wheat procurement and in the light of the assurance of the State Bank of India (SBI).
The total procurement of wheat this season so far stands at 118,08,318 MT, of which 115,47,340 MT has been purchased by the state government procurement agencies. Of this, 111,41,940 MT has already been lifted from the mandis, making it a remarkably smooth and swift procurement operation.