Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and his Deputy Dushyant Chautala on Tuesday welcomed the Centre's decision to relax the uniform specifications of wheat during procurement season 2023-24. However, according to a Haryana government statement, the state government has requested the central government to withdraw the value cut.
It further said that till the time the central government takes any decision in this regard, the Haryana government will bear the amount of the value cut and it will not have any adverse effect on the farmers. Notably, the central government has relaxed the limit of shrivelled and broken grains up to 18 per cent against the existing limit of 6 per cent under the uniform specifications.
No value cut will be applicable on wheat having shrivelled and broken grains up to 6 per cent. The value cut will not be applicable on wheat having lustre loss up to 10 per cent, while a value cut of Rs 5.31 per quintal on a flat basis will be deducted on wheat having lustre loss grains above 10 per cent up to 80 per cent.
Haryana Bharatiya Kisan Union (Charuni) president, Gurnam Singh Charuni said that farmers are demanding that the government should withdraw the value cut decision."If the government does not withdraw the decision, then farmers will hold protests outside the mandis in the state on Thursday," Charuni said.
Meanwhile, according to the official statement, Khattar expressed gratitude for relaxation in the uniform specifications of wheat during procurement season 2023-24 in view of lustre loss or shrivelled and broken grains in Rabi crops due to unseasonal rains and hailstorms.
The chief minister said that in view of the problems faced by the farmers, he spoke to the Union Minister for Food, Public Distribution and Consumer Affairs Piyush Goyal over the telephone, who assured that the government would relax the procurement norms for wheat.
Chautala extended gratitude towards Prime Minister and Union Minister Piyush Goyal and said that the central government has now given permission to the procurement agencies to buy wheat even at a maximum lustre loss of up to 80 per cent. Similarly, there will be no reduction in the purchase price if there is a 6 per cent shrinkage in wheat grain, and till the decision of the central government, the Haryana government will bear the minor deduction on the purchase of wheat with shrivelled grains up to 18 per cent, Chautala said.
Khattar said that farming is such a business which always involves risk, including having to face the vagaries of weather. Referring to last month's heavy rains in several parts of the state, the chief minister said that a similar pattern was witnessed in 2015 when unseasonal rains in February caused damage to the wheat crops. At that time, the state government had given a compensation of Rs 1,190 crore to the farmers before May-June.
He said that for this year too, the work of Girdawari (field inspection) for crop loss is underway and the e-Fasal Kshatipurti portal is also open, where farmers can upload their crop loss information. The compensation will be given to the farmers after verification by the Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Department and Revenue and Disaster Management Department; and this time also, full compensation will be provided to the farmers by May, he noted.
The chief minister said that the government is standing with the farmers at every step. Each grain of wheat will be procured at the rate of Rs 2,125 per quintal. He said that farmers are paid for their crops procured within 48-72 hours.