Paddy cleared for hulling: Rs 1.17 crore godown rent kept pending

Paddy cleared for hulling: Rs 1.17 crore godown rent kept pending

Following a report that was published in Deccan Herald that rodents are feasting on the paddy stored at godowns across the district, the authorities concerned have woken up from their slumber and have started clearing the stock by transporting it through lorries for hulling.

The paddy stocked is not only getting destroyed, but the entire exercise has also proved costly for the exchequer, which has to cough a whopping Rs 1.17 crore as rent for the godowns.

The government had purchased 5.41 lakh quintals of paddy at a support price of Rs 1,600 per quintal from across the district last March, out of which 47,000 quintals were hulled, and the remaining were stored in 93 godowns. The rent to be paid for the same till December has crossed Rs one crore.

While the rent for godowns situated in city is fixed at Rs 4 per square feet, it is Rs 2.50 in rural areas. The rent has been paid accordingly up to June, said officials.

Out of Rs 47 lakh rent from December 2014 to June, Rs 42 lakh has been remitted. However, Rs 70 lakh rent from June to December is yet to be paid.

Food and Civil Supplies Corporation Managing Director M L Panchegowda said a letter requesting the release funds to pay rents for the godown owners has been dispatched to the Centre.

The government which hesitated to respond to the demand of the rice mill owners of hiking hulling charge from Rs 10, had ironically spent Rs 23 per quintal of rice for storage purposes.

A letter has been submitted seeking approval for the sale of 2.10 lakh quintal of paddy, which cannot be hulled, through auction, which might be held on December 8, said Panchegowda.

With the rice mill owners interested to purchase the newly harvested paddy that will start arriving at the market, the government may find it difficult to sell the paddy at Rs 1,600, while it is available at Rs 1,400 in the open market.

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