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Indian govt asks CCI to procure more cotton at MSP
13
Nov '14
The Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) has been asked by the Indian Government to procure more cotton at minimum support price (MSP) by opening new procurement centres.
 
At a meeting held in New Delhi, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh directed the CCI to ensure procurement of cotton at MSP in the four cotton growing states of Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Gujarat, to protect the interest of cotton farmers in these states.
 
CCI CMD informed the meeting that the organisation has taken all possible steps to increase the number of procurement centres. He added that CCI does not have any authority to appoint any cooperative federation to act as its agent. He suggested that the Ministry of Agriculture may look into the possibility of enhancing the Government guarantee limit of NAFED for facilitating them to appoint State Agency i.e. Maharashtra federation.
 
Agriculture Minister Singh directed CCI to release an advertisement giving details of the present number of procurement centres and their locations. He also instructed CCI to increase their manpower including technical personnel so that procurement of cotton may be done effectively. In addition to this, periodic press briefings may be held to give impression to the farmers that CCI avenues for procurement are at their doorsteps.
 
Singh also suggested that surprise checks by senior officers should be conducted and senior officers should stay for a longer period in the field so that farmers’ interests are safeguarded fully and they do not take recourse to distress sale of cotton. Singh further directed CCI that Members of Parliament of all the concerned states should be informed through letters about the steps taken by CCI to avoid distress sale of cotton by farmers and the suggestions of MPs to deal with this problems should also be invited.
 
Singh further added CCI should also publicise that export of cotton is open and also give details of procurement so far in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
 
The CCI assured that the concerns raised in the meeting about the percentage of moistures in the cotton during initial procurement, quality losses due to gunny bags and increase in number of procurement centres will be taken care of and all possible steps will be taken to protect the interests of the farmers.
 
At the meeting, Secretary, Commerce, emphasised the need for exploring the possibility of new markets like Bangladesh, Vietnam, Turkey and Indonesia and long-term cotton export agreement with these countries. (RKS)
 

Fibre2fashion News Desk - India

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