Paddy procurement in Haryana and Punjab to begin Sunday: Centre announces as farmers protest outside Khattar's house

Farmers broke police barricades and faced water cannons, including near Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's house in Karnal to protest the delay in procurement

FP Staff October 02, 2021 22:50:38 IST
Paddy procurement in Haryana and Punjab to begin Sunday: Centre announces as farmers protest outside Khattar's house

File image of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar. PTI

The Centre on Saturday announced that paddy and millet procurement in Haryana and Punjab will start from tomorrow (3 October), two days after it said the process will be delayed this year.

"As per decision taken, the Haryana has government has assured that paddy procurement will start from tomorrow (Sunday). They have made everything ready. Procurement in Punjab is already in process, from tomorrow both states will begin buying," said Ashwini Choubey, Union Minister of State for Food, on Saturday afternoon after a meeting in Delhi with Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar and his deputy, Dushyant Chautala.

Before leaving for the National Capital, Khattar had said, "Farmers will not have to face any problem in paddy procurement."

The Centre's reversal came after farmers from both the states staged angry protests at several places. Farmers broke police barricades and faced water cannons, including near Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar's house in Karnal to protest the delay in procurement.

The Centre on Thursday had postponed procurement of kharif paddy in Punjab and Haryana, which usually begins on 1 October to 11 October as the crop maturity is delayed and moisture content in fresh arrival is beyond permissible limits owing to recent heavy rains.

In Karnal, the Haryana Police used water cannons to disperse protesting farmers after they tried to lay siege on Khattar's residence, while in Shahabad and Panchkula, the agitators used tractors to break police barricades to reach houses of BJP leaders, including Haryana Minister Sandeep Singh, officials said.

Farmers stage protest

The situation became tense in a few places in Haryana and Punjab after minor clashes broke out between farmers and police. In several places in these states farmers after reaching residences of ministers, legislators and MPs, parked their food grain-laden trolleys in front of their houses.

While the BJP in alliance with the JJP is in power in Haryana, the Congress is the ruling party in Punjab, and both state governments have urged the Centre to ensure farmers do not face any problem in paddy procurement.

In Punjab, farmers gathered outside the residences of several Congress legislators, including state assembly Speaker Rana K P Singh in Rupnagar and MLA Harjot Kamal in Moga, and staged protests over the delay in purchase of paddy crop.

While Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ask government agencies to begin paddy procurement, Khattar along with Haryana Agriculture Minister JP Dalal rushed to Delhi on Saturday to ensure farmers do not face any problems in crop procurement.

The Samyukt Kisan Morcha (SKM), an umbrella body of farmer unions, on Friday had given a call for holding protests outside the residences of legislators in Punjab and Haryana to register their protest.

Police said that there was no report of any "major" untoward incident from the two states.

The procurement operation is undertaken by the Central government's nodal agency Food Corporation of India (FCI) along with state agencies.

Haryana Minister Anil Vij on Saturday said the farmers' agitation is getting "violent day by day".

"Farmers' agitation is getting violent day by day. Violent movement in the country of Mahatma Gandhi cannot be allowed," said Vij in a tweet.

Police personnel were deployed in strength to maintain law and order, the officials said.

Farmers expressed apprehension that they would suffer if their crop is not purchased at the grain markets.

Paddy crop, though in small quantity, has started arriving in mandis (markets) especially in border areas of Punjab, farmers said.

They said the farmers who have brought their crop at mandis, will go if their crop is not purchased. Some fear that they would be forced to sell crops below the minimum support price to private traders.

With inputs from PTI

Updated Date:

also read

'Make Rangla Punjab again': Bhagwant Mann thanks AAP, vows to win by two-third majority
India

'Make Rangla Punjab again': Bhagwant Mann thanks AAP, vows to win by two-third majority

Earlier today, Mann was declared the chief ministerial candidate of AAP after the party received nearly 22 lakh responses on the phone number released last week asking people to give names of their preferred candidate

Days after busting terror module, police seizes 2.5 kg RDX, arms in poll-bound Punjab
India

Days after busting terror module, police seizes 2.5 kg RDX, arms in poll-bound Punjab

A detonator, a detonating cord, five explosive fuses along with wires and 12 live cartridges of AK-47 rifles, have also been seized, police said

Delhi witnesses highest rainfall for January in at least 13 years; waterlogging reported
India

Delhi witnesses highest rainfall for January in at least 13 years; waterlogging reported

The weather department has predicted a cloudy sky for Delhi till 9 January.