The Telangana State Government’s persistent efforts to bail out chilli farmers in the State has paid off with the Central government coming forward to purchase 3.37 lakh quintals of red chillies under the Market Intervention Scheme (MIS).
The Union Ministry of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare issued an order in this regard and sent it to the State government yesterday. The Centre’s order issued on May 1, which would provide the much-required relief to thousands of chilli farmers in the State, is a result of pressure mounted on the Centre by Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao, Agriculture Minister Pocharam Srinivas Reddy, Marketing Minister T Harish Rao and TRS MPs in the past couple of months to purchase red chilli under the MIS.
The Central government has asked the Marketing Department officials to procure chilli from May 2 to May 31. The Centre also asked State government to ensure procurement would be done only through cooperative societies, farmers’ organizations or directly from the farmers to eliminate the possibility of middlemen taking advantage of the scheme.
“A mechanism should be developed to ensure that the produce is purchased from genuine farmers only, and all relevant documents/records should be properly maintained by the procuring agency,” the Central order said.