Tech glitches delay opening of paddy purchase centres

Tech glitches delay opening of paddy purchase centres

Paddy growers have been filling paddy in sacks to keep them ready for sale.

Paddy growers in Kodagu fear loss as the paddy purchase centres have not been opened so far even after the paddy harvesting is completed. 

An ineffective implementation of the new software and online registration process are said to have been causing a delay in the opening of the paddy purchase centres, the sources have said. This has been in turn compelling the farmers to sell the paddy cultivated by them at throwaway prices, in the open market.

Many paddy growers in the Southern part of Kodagu, had kept the paddy ready for sale, by filling them in sacks, hoping the purchase centres to open. But now, the stored paddy is getting spoiled. To avoid the harvested crop from getting damaged, the farmers have been selling the paddy at a mere rate of Rs 1,100 to 1,200 per quintal.

The government had issued orders to purchase paddy through the purchase centres. The normal paddy will be purchased at Rs 1,815 and Grade ‘A’ paddy will be purchased at Rs 1,825, the order said. The Food and Civil Supplies Corporation will act as a link between the rice mills and farmers. But, as the process of purchase could not be started till the new system ‘fruits’ is installed.

Thammaiah, a farmer from Balele near Ponnampet said that the purchasing should have been started in mid-December. Even though the paddy purchasing centres have been opened in the three APMCs of the district, the purchasing has not begun as the registration has not been completed.

New system

Earlier, the farmers were required to produce their RTC, Aadhaar card and bank account details at the purchasing centre, while selling paddy. But from this year, it has been made mandatory to furnish the ‘Fruits’ identity card issued by the department of agriculture.

The ID will contain the information about the beneficiary. But, the details in the identity cards issued by the agriculture department, are not matching with the software. The errors in the software are yet to be rectified, according an official in the department of agriculture.

Another official said that the new system has been implemented to avoid the menace of middlemen. Earlier, many middlemen brought the paddy in the name of farmers.

Food and Civil Supplies Department deputy director Goutham Kumar Shetty said that if the information of the farmers is not matching with the details uploaded on the software, the said cases will be taken note by the concerned staff.

Too many rules

But, the farmers have something else to say. Rice mills have been identified for the purchase of paddy. But, registration on the new software, imposing of maximum limit for the purchases, mapping and other procedures have been consuming a lot of time. Therefore, farmers are discouraged by the idea of paddy purchasing centres. Instead of the same, they have been preferring to sell paddy to the merchants directly, at throwaway prices. Having cleared all conditions, only one farmer has been registered under the new software, having cleared all conditions.

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