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Cotton farmers should sell their produce to CCI

Hyderabad,  Cotton farmers in Telangana should book profit by selling their produce to the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) at the MSP announced by the Centre, without falling prey to middlemen, Union Minister of State for Home G Kishan Reddy said on Thursday. The Centre has directed the CCI to purchase cotton up to the “last quintal” so that the farmers don”t suffer any losses. This was in spite of the cotton bales purchased last year still lying in storage centres, he told reporters here. He was speaking after holding a meeting with officials of CCI, Food Corporation of India (FCI) and other Central government organisations on procurement of cotton, paddy and other issues. The Centre would take up several measures to remove the system of middlemen and to deposit the money directly in the banks accounts of farmers, he said. Machines to check moisture would be made available (two each) at every purchase centre so that there was no delay for farmers in the purchasing process, he said. Observing that the CCI made all arrangements for purchase as per the projections shown by the state government, he said the farmers need not worry and that they should not sell their produce to middlemen. The Telangana farmers should draw profit by selling their produce to CCI even if there was a delay by a couple of days, especially because the price offered in the open market was less than the minimum support price (MSP) announced by the Centre, Reddy said. The CCI was taking up programmes to raise the awareness of farmers on matters, including bringing cotton to the purchase centres without moisture, the price at which cotton is being purchased and how the farmers should take precautions against the exploitation of middlemen, he said. The state government had put pressure on the farmers to cultivate “sanna rakam” (fine) variety of paddy, he alleged adding, such variety was not being purchased now when the produce is brought to the market. The state government should purchase the produce as it promoted the cultivation of ”sanna rakam” variety, he said. The Union Minister urged that a bonus be also paid for the variety. The FCI would, however, procure as per quality, regardless of the variety, he said. PTI