Kolkata: To save farmers from being hoodwinked by the owners of godowns, the state Agriculture and Food departments have decided to distribute two machines each at all the government-run procurement centres and sale counters, to separate dust and impurities from rice and other food grains.
The initiative has been taken jointly by the two government departments, after there were some complaints from the farmers, saying that godown owners often deceive them while weighing the food grains.
It was alleged that the godown owners (Arotdars) often force them to believe that huge amounts of dust particles are found in the grains. This happens only because there is no proper machine that can separate the dust from rice and other food grains.
According to government sources, Agriculture minister Asish Banerjee will hold a high level meeting with his counterpart in the Food department, Jyotipriya Mallick, at Nabanna on June 19. The main objective of the meeting is to chalk out an elaborate plan on how the new machines can be distributed at the procurement centres, to get the desired results.
This practice often leads to huge loss for the farmers. Keeping this in view, the Agriculture and Food departments have come up with an idea of installing two machines at each procurement centre or outlet, so that the farmers get proper price for their produces.
Due to the lack of any such machine, the Arotdars often determine the amount of dust according to their own choice, without actually measuring it.
The Agriculture minister said: "We will not tolerate any kind of activities which prevent farmers from getting proper price for their produces. To ensure that the farmers are not deceived by any unscrupulous businessman, both the Agriculture and Food departments will install two advanced machines at each centre, to separate dust particles from the food grains."
Banerjee also reminded that the motto of the Mamata Banerjee government is to ensure that the socio-economic condition of the farmers improves. For this, the government has already started a host of new schemes for the benefit of farmers.
"Our Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has not only started various schemes to help the farmers increase their production, but also instructed to ensure that they get proper price for their produces. The new scheme will soon be implemented," Banerjee added.
It may be mentioned here that the middleman system, which had been prevalent during the erstwhile Left Front government, has been ironed out due to implementation of various schemes.
The government has been giving certified seeds to the farmers at a subsidised rate, extending the privileges of insurance and giving them platforms to sell their produces at proper price.