Amid Covid-19 crisis, the Punjab Food and Civil Supplies Department has successfully completed the massive procurement operations by ensuring innovative arrangements for smooth procurement of farmers’ produce.
Disclosing this here today, Punjab Food and Civil Supplies Minister Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that lock-down/curfew was imposed in the state on March 23, 2020, while the crop of the farmer was ready to be brought to mandis by Baisakhi. It was a burning issue that how procurement could be made this time during lockdown/curfew, said the Minister adding that under the able leadership of Punjab Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh, the department formulated a comprehensive plan besides stating the procurement process from April 15.
The minister said that to check the spread of corona virus during the procurement, adequate arrangements had been made to issue passes to the farmers bringing their produce to the mandis besides ensuring compliance of sanitation, sanitizer, mask and social distancing etc in view of COVID-19. He said that not a single case of corona virus was detected during the entire procurement process of wheat. During this season the procurement agencies of the state procured 127.69 LMT wheat at the rate of Rs. 1925/-MSP and the payment was made to the farmers within 48 hours.
Ashu said that comprehensive arrangements were also made for the procurement of paddy and the number of mandis in the state was temporarily increased to 4200. During this period 203.96 lakh metric tonnes of paddy was procured at a cost of Rs. 1888/- MSP.