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Why Centre Refused to Buy Boiled Rice from Telangana

Ayushi Raina
Ayushi Raina
KTR discusses setting an annual target for paddy purchase

Despite the Telangana government's demand and TRS protests, the Centre has said unequivocally that it would not purchase boiling rice from the state. The Centre has also not stated how much paddy it expects to buy this season. 

However, the NDA government guaranteed a ministerial delegation led by Industry Minister KT Rama Rao that it will increase paddy and rice procurement to some extent. The Telangana administration stated that the Centre's move will result in the abolition of 'boiled rice' in the state in the future. 

After another meeting with agricultural and public distribution system (PDS) department officials, the Centre told the Telangana government that a final decision on the quantity of paddy to be bought will be released on November 26. 

On Tuesday, a ministerial and official delegation led by KTR, agriculture minister S Niranjan Reddy, and civil supplies minister Gangula Kamalakar met separately with Union Food and Public Distribution Minister Piyush Goyal and Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar to discuss the burning paddy procurement issue.  For about three hours, the government delegation held discussion with the Union ministers. 

KTR discusses setting an annual target for paddy purchase 

According to officials, despite the fact that Goyal was engaged with an American delegation, he made time to meet with the state delegation.

During the meeting, KTR discussed setting an annual target of 120 lakh metric tonnes for rice procurement and increasing current rabi season purchase from 40 lakh MTs to at least 70 lakh MTs. 

The Centre said it would work out the figure with top officials from the agricultural and PDS sectors on Wednesday and come up with an estimate by Thursday on the annual target of paddy procurement, purchase of 90 percent production in the current season. While the state government claims that the state's paddy cultivation acreage was 62.13 lakh during the Kharif season, the Centre claims it was 58.66 lakh. 

KTR informed the Union minister that once they get some clarification on the matter, the state would plan accordingly and encourage farmers not to plant paddy and instead propose alternate crops. 

The state administration urged residents to wait for clarification from the Centre on paddy farming during the upcoming Rabi season. 

The NDA government agreed with KCR's suggestion that the Centre make the annual procurement target public. While acknowledging that it was a good idea that needed to be adopted across the nation, the Centre stated that from next year, it will declare an annual target for all the states. 

Chief minister KCR is camping in Delhi since Sunday evening to sort out paddy procurement issue. He had asked for PM's appointment to apprise him about the issue. 

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