Well being of potato farmers is our priority area – Dinesh Pratap Singh

Lucknow: Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Horticulture, Agricultural Marketing, Agricultural Foreign Trade and Agricultural Export,  Dinesh Pratap Singh told the cold storage owners that the potatoes of the regional farmers who bring potatoes to the cold stores should be stored on the same day.

He has given strict instructions to the cold storage owners and Horticulture Department personnel that potato farmers coming to the cold storage should be treated with sensitivity, they should not face any problem in storing their potatoes. He said that strict action will be taken against the personnel of Horticulture Department who are negligent in storing potatoes of farmers in cold stores.

He said that the employee of Horticulture Department has been suspended for negligence in the cold storage of district Rae Bareilly.

The Horticulture Minister told the potato farmers that the state government under the leadership of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath is fully committed to the interests of the potato farmers. He said that efforts are being made to ensure that potato farmers get a fair price for their produce.

That’s why the government has decided to purchase average quality potatoes at the rate of Rs.650 per quintal under the market intervention scheme. The work is being done to preserve the potatoes of the farmers of the state. He said that potato farmers will not be harmed under any circumstances. The farmers of Uttar Pradesh are being introduced to the markets of the world.

The potatoes of the farmers of the state are being sent to the country and abroad.

According to the information received from the department, out of the storage capacity of 164.27 lakh metric tonnes, 105.29 lakh metric tonnes of potatoes have been stored in 1985 cold storages in the state. About 59 lakh MT potato storage capacity is vacant.

Minister  Singh made a surprise inspection of the cold stores of district Rae Bareli to take feedback at the ground level whether the potatoes of the farmers are being stored properly in the cold stores. Despite having a fracture in his leg, the minister reached the cold storage and inquired about the actual status of potato storage.

He inspected Jigna Prem Cold Store of Jagatpur block of Rae Bareilly district, Lakshmi Cold Store of Lalganj, Safdarganj Cold Storage of Barabanki district and Vindra, Parmeshwar Cold Storage etc. During the inspection, the potato of the farmers was being stored in the cold store under the supervision of the personnel of the Horticulture Department. From the records and inspection of the cold storage owners, the Minister found that 40 percent of the cold storage space in Rae Bareilly district is vacant for potato storage.

Horticulture Minister assured the present farmers that the government will not allow potato farmers to be harmed under any circumstances. By the way, according to estimates, potato production is not estimated to be more than the capacity of cold storage installed in Rae Bareli. While assuring the farmers, he also said that now the potatoes of the state have started selling in the world markets.

Horticulture Minister instructed District Magistrate Rae Bareli that potato farmers of Rae Bareli should not face any inconvenience under any circumstances. Monitoring and supervision should be done on this at the administrative level as well and the circumstances should be informed daily. He said that officers and employees of Horticulture Department have been appointed at all 27 cold stores in Rae Bareli. He said that Ramnewaj, an employee of Horticulture Department, who was negligent in potato storage, was ordered to be suspended. Directing the Garden Officer, said that if any irregularity or negligence is found on any cold storage, strict action will be taken against the concerned. He said that confusion is being spread by some people that the rate of potato at Rs 650 has been fixed by the state government.

The fact is that for the purpose of controlling the rates of potato in the market, on the advice of the Central Potato Research Council (CPRI), the Government of India and the State Government together have fixed Rs.650 so that if the market price of potato falls below Rs.650 So the state government will buy potatoes of average quality from the farmers at the rate of Rs.650. These rates have been done with the objective of stabilizing the price of potato market. There are different prices of potato in the market of different districts in the whole state, which is selling potato of farmers for Rs.800 to Rs.850.

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