Badal asks DCs to evolve three-tier mechanism for smooth procurement of wheat
Reiterates firm commitment to procure every single grain of the farmers.
DCs to command procurement operations at district levelj
Chandigarh: In what comes as a big relief to Punjab government, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Wednesday issued the authorisation of Cash Credit Limit (CCL) of Rs 17,523 crore towards first installment for the procurement of 90 lakh tonnes of wheat for Rabi Season-2016. Harcharan Bains, Advisor on National Affairs to the Punjab Chief Minister, said that the RBI would issue another authorisation for second installment of CCL for the procurement of wheat during the current Rabi season shortly. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his prompt personal intervention to get the impasse on CCL resolved. Chief Minister Badal along with Food and Civil Supplies Minister Adesh Partap Singh Kairon had called on Modi in New Delhi on Monday to urge him for immediate clearance of CCL. Badal had sought cash credit limit of Rs 20,094 crore to enable timely payment to farmers for procured wheat. He had explained the state’s position to Modi with regard to discrepancies in accounts of foodgrain stocks while denying that the state made any diversion of funds meant for procurement purposes. RBI has asked banks lending to Punjab for grain procurement to account for such ‘bad loans’ before providing fresh ones. “The farmer needs his country to stand by him in his hour of extreme adversity and distress. The government must come to his rescue and repay a part of the debt which we always owe him,” Badal had told the Prime Minister. After report that foodgrain stocks worth crores have gone ‘missing’ from godowns, Punjab government had refuted the charge. Some 30-odd banks, led by SBI, had extended loans of Rs 12,000 crore to the state for its foodgrain procurement.
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