CM seeks PM’s intervention to boost state’s dairy sector
Chandigarh – Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday sought personal intervention of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to direct the Ministry of Agriculture for initiating major steps to boost dairy sector across the state in general and supplement the income of dairy farmers in particular. In a letter to the Prime Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh demanded one time subsidy on the stocks of Skimmed Milk Powder (SMP) at the rate of Rs 50 per kg and White Butter at the rate of Rs 25 per kg as on March 31, this year. Likewise, he also sought interest subvention on working capital loan availed by state milk federations for the milk flush season from November last year to April this year. He also urged the Prime Minister to ask the Ministry of Commerce to enhance the export incentive on dairy products by state milk cooperatives from current rate of 5 per cent to 15 percent of the value of the consignment. The Chief Minister apprised Modi that the dairy cooperatives in the country are passing through tough times due to a steep fall in the prices of SMP and other milk products in the international milk market over the last couple of years. The fall in the prices has resulted in non-procurement of milk by the private sector thereby putting the entire pressure on the dairy cooperatives. Elaborating further, Captain Amarinder Singh informed the Prime Minister that in view of the current situation in the state, a lot of working capital (arranged through bank overdraft and short term loans) is getting blocked as the state milk federation has to make timely payments to the dairy farmers. In order to safeguard the interests of the dairy farmers, the state government was currently being compelled to maintain a huge amount of inventory of SMP and white butter due to continuous procurement of milk as failure to do so would result in distress sales as the stock prices of these commodities have touched an all-time low. Adding further, Captain Amarinder Singh said that these bold steps taken by the Union government would go along way in strengthening the dairy cooperatives besides improving the economic lot of beleaguered dairy farmers in the state.
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