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Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann requests Centre for immediate relaxation in shrivelled grain norms

Chandigarh, April 24, 2022 (Yes Punjab News)
The Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann today appealed to the Union Government to relax the specifications for shriveled grains in the purchase of wheat in the state of Punjab, without the imposition of any value cut, thereby protecting the incomes of the farmers who are already impacted by low yield and severe farm debt

Divulging further, Bhagwant Mann said that he had personally talked to Sh. Amit Shah, Union Home Minister, and Sh. Piyush Goyal, Union Minister for Food & Public Distribution Thursday and requested them to allow the relaxations based on the field data collected by the teams deputed by the Government of India. Subsequently, he had also written to the Union Minister requesting him for the same.

The Chief Minister further said that he is concerned that despite the passage of one week since the central teams, deputed by the Ministry of Food and Public Distribution, completed their task and submitted their report to the Ministry highlighting the extent of shriveling of the grain, no decision has been taken by the Union Government. The Chief Minister emphasized that farming issues are required to be resolved on high priority and the delay is impacting the procurement operations.

Pointing out further, the Chief Minister said that the AAP Government is committed to buy every grain from the farmer. He added that it is completely unfair to blame the farmer and penalize them for shriveling of the grain, as this is in Nature’s hands and beyond the control of the farmer. Consequently, his Government had expeditiously purchased the grain coming in the Mandis, he said, while taking up the matter parallelly with the Government of India.

Referring to the glut in certain Mandis, the Chief Minister said that it is primarily on account of FCI’s inability to accept shriveled wheat from these Mandis on account of non-finalization of relaxation in norms, thereby choking the Mandis and putting farmers and Arhtiyas to inconvenience.

The Chief Minister added that he is hopeful of an early positive outcome from the Union Government and thereafter lifting will improve drastically.

It may be recalled that due to an extreme heatwave, the wheat grain had become shriveled and the state government had sought relaxation in norms so that wheat could be purchased and contributed to the central pool. The shriveling of the grain was a natural phenomenon beyond the control of the farmer and, therefore, the State Government decided that the farmers should not be penalized for something beyond their control.

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