Odisha govt brings in new control order on paddy procurement
In a bid to maintain discipline in paddy procurement and regulate the custom mills, the state government today decided to bring the Odisha Rice and Paddy Procurement and Custom Milling of Rice Order, 2016.
A proposal in this regard by the food supplies and consumer welfare department was approved at a cabinet meeting presided over by Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik here.
"This control order has several safeguards with respect to procurement of paddy, delivery of paddy for custom mills, direction for milling of paddy into rice, ensuring milling of paddy within the Kharif marketing season," Chief Secretary A P Padhi told reporters.
Stating that Odisha was a decentralised procurement state since Kharif marketing season 2003-04, Padhi said the state procures paddy through agencies from farmers and pay minimum support price for fair average quality of paddy.
The agencies mill paddy through private millers and deliver the rice either to the state government or to FCI for meeting the needs of the public distribution system, he said.
Earlier, the Odisha Rice and Paddy Procurement (Levy) and Restriction on Sale and Movement Order, 2013 provided legal framework to regulate the custom millers in the state.
However, that order was rescinded from October 1, 2015, thus creating a vacuum of any regulatory mechanism for custom milling by millers, the Chief Secretary pointed out justifying requirement of the new order.
He, however, said the new order was brought as per the suggestion of the Centre to regulate paddy procurement and custom of milling of rice in December 2015.
As per the new order, no state agency would be allowed to procure FAQ (Fair Average Quality) paddy at a price below Minimum Support Price as notified by the Centre and the state would have powers to direct the custom millers to convert paddy delivered by the state agency into rice within such time and terms as decided.
This apart, the new order would ensure that millers were obliged to mill paddy and deliver FAQ as per out turn ratio fixed by the Centre, custom millers cannot dispose of paddy in shape of paddy and would maintain accounts of all transactions with the state agencies and others, separately.
"The enforcement officers, as per the new order, will have powers of entry, search and seizure in respect of custom rice mills," Padhi said.
A total of eight proposals today got the cabinet's nod, the Chief Secretary said.