Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal on Thursday mentioned the state authorities has “no selection” however to implement the Centre’s mandated instruction on direct financial institution switch of MSP to farmers from the present season.
Badal, after a prolonged dialogue with Union Food Minister Piyush Goyal on this issue, mentioned the Centre rejected the state authorities’s demand to give extra time to implement direct financial institution switch (DBT) of minimal help value (MSP) to farmers.
The Punjab Chief Minister has known as a gathering with ‘arthiyas’ (fee brokers) on Friday to talk about a few new mechanism forward of wheat procurement that can start from April 10.
Punjab procures wheat and rice at MSP on behalf of the central authorities below the National Food Security Act (NFSA).
Currently, MSP to farmers in Punjab is paid by arthiyas not like straight to farmers’ checking account in different states.
“The Government of India (GoI) had requested us to implement the DBT for farmers. We had sought extra time as a result of in Punjab there’s a conventional arthiyas system….. But the GoI dismissed our demand. We tried so much however they didn’t hear,” Badal informed reporters after 2.30 hours of assembly.
The state authorities has “no different selection” however to implement the DBT for farmers from the present season itself and a brand new mechanism shall be labored out, he mentioned.
Citing causes for rejecting Punjab’s demand, Badal mentioned the central authorities was arguing that the meals inventory procured belongs to it and the state authorities is simply an agent and will make fee straight to farmers.
Arthiyas a standard system: Punjab govt argues with Centre
“But arthiyas are conventional system and one wants to perceive this. It is tough to unravel this method….. We will come out with a mechanism,” he added.
Besides Badal, Punjab Food Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu, PWD Minister Vijay Inder Singla and Mandi Board Chairman S Laal Sing have been current within the assembly.
Senior officers from Union Food and Agriculture Ministries have been additionally current.
The Punjab Food Minister mentioned, “Tomorrow, we’ll meet arthiyas and take them into the loop. We will develop a mechanism that can give some safety to arthiyas. The CM has stored a gathering with arthiyas tomorrow.”
From April 10, wheat procurement will begin and each grain shall be bought, he mentioned, and added, “The fee will go straight into the (financial institution) account of farmers.”
Speaking to PTI, Union Food Secretary Sudhanshu Pandey mentioned, “Punjab ministers within the assembly agreed to implement the DBT for farmers from this season. Currently, MSP fee is routed by arthiyas. We are asking them to pay straight to farmers.”
State governments have been requested to implement DBT to farmers in 2018. By 2019, virtually all states began implementing it apart from Punjab, he mentioned.
Among different points, the Punjab Finance Minister mentioned the Centre has agreed to defer implementation of land data integration (required to monitor land possession of farmers throughout procurement) by six months.
‘GOI not proud of our rationalization…’
On launch of pending rural improvement Fund (RDF) to state authorities, the minister mentioned about 3 per cent RDF is fastened for Punjab. The state is getting just one per cent and relaxation two per cent is pending.
“GoI shouldn’t be proud of the justification given by us. They assured that GoI will launch arrear of two per cent price if the state authorities offers a reputable justification on the place the funds have been spent,” he mentioned.
The Punjab Finance Minister within the assembly raised concern about piling inventory of foodgrains within the state and requested for an early liquidation so that there’s area for the brand new crop.
“GoI has given assurance that it’s going to take foodgrains inventory out of Punjab,” he mentioned and added the Centre has additionally assured it’ll launch the dues price Rs 15,000 crore earliest to the state.
The minister additionally knowledgeable the Centre that the state will implement the distribution of fortified rice through Public Distribution System and welfare schemes like Midday Meal Scheme.
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