The government agencies in Punjab have procured 2 lakh metric tonne of wheat more than the target set by the state government amid the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing farmer agitation against the new farm laws.
Nine lakh farmers in Punjab have received over Rs 23,000 crore from the government via Direct Benefit Transfer Scheme (DBT). It was for the first time the farmers in Punjab have received the minimum support price (MSP) of Rs 1,975 per quintal directly into their bank accounts without the arhtiyas, the Indian Express reported.
The government agencies such as the Food Corporation of India and others have procured a total of 132.08 lakh metric tonnes of wheat. This is for the first time in a decade that Punjab has surpassed its own target of wheat procurement.
Data from the Food Corporation of India records show this is the highest wheat procurement in Punjab’s history and also the number of farmers covered is comparably higher from last year’s 8.8 lakh farmers.
Despite a warm march this year, the procurement of wheat was higher though the yield was lesser. Malwa region that has borne the brunt of the farmer’s agitation contributed lesser but other districts such as Doaba and Majha made it up.
Ravi Bhagat, Director, Department of Punjab Food Supply and Consumer Affairs told the Indian Express that the higher procurement happened due to the DBT. The government has registered farmers on the Anaj Kharid portal ensuring money was credited to the farmers and not to the middlemen.