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ASAMB racks its brains to bring 'mandi' concept to State

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  7 Aug 2017 12:00 AM GMT

By our Staff Reporter

GUWAHATI, August 6: The Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board (ASAMB) racks its brains to bring the concept of ‘mandi’ markets in Assam so as to make markets one-destition for all items.

In phase one three such markets will be set up in the State – one each at Guwahati, upper Assam and Silchar – and the process is set to set in soon. ASAMB vice chairman Manoj Baruah, talking to The Sentinel, said: “The agricultural markets in Assam aren’t on a par with their counterparts elsewhere in the tion. Ours is an effort to bring the concept of ‘mandi’ or termil market as they are seen elsewhere in the country to the State. To begin with, we’ve chosen Guwahati, an upper Assam town and Silchar. As many 50 bighas of land has been procured by the Board at Chatla Haur at Silchar for the proposed mandi. This apart, the Board has 10 bighas of its own at the Haur. The DPR of the ‘mandi’ at Silchar has already been prepared. The work is to begin soon. The survey for land has been going on in Guwahati and in upper Assam. These three mandis, we hope, are set to bring about a new concept to markets in the State.”

On minimum support price (MSP) to farmers, Baruah said: “This is very much in our policy to give succour to the farmers. Taking that in mind, we do procure paddy and potato directly from farmers. In fiscal 2016-17 as much as 16,000 metric tonnes of paddy costing around Rs 24 crore was procured through 41 specified paddy procuring centres in the State. The rate of the paddy was fixed at Rs 1,470 per quintal. Apart from that, the Board is ready to procure baodhan at Rs 1,500 a quintal for export abroad through a private company of Harya.”

On potato, Baruah said: “Dispur sanctioned Rs 1 crore for the procurement of potato. While potato worth over Rs 85 crore was procured from Zinzia in Sonitpur district and Mandia in Barpeta district, the remaining amount was spent on various other heads like transportation. The Board is going to call tender for the sale of the potato weighing 17023.55 quintals. Apart from paddy and potato, now the Board is also going to procure pulses and oilseeds. We’ve also developed our own network to know the rates of commodities in markets in the State. As many as 24 markets of the State have been included under AgMarket connecting farmers and markets under the Market Research and Information Network Scheme of the Centre. With this the farmers of the State will know the markets in websites – and More agricutural produces will be brought under this scheme.”

Now the Board is busy in making its network for market assessment. The entire process is to cushion the blow which the Board received after the closure of its check-gates leading to an annual loss of around Rs 30 crore.

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