Punjab seeks more storage space on record wheat arrival

Last Updated: Monday, April 19, 2010 - 23:33

Chandigarh: Facing a severe space crunch,
Punjab today asked the Food Corporation to create additional
storage facility for 71 lakh tonne more of food grain and also
to speed up the outbound movement of the procured grain.

These demands were raised by the state at a meeting with
Food Corporation chairman and managing director Siraj Hussain
here today who was touring Punjab and Haryana to inspect the
ongoing wheat lifting.

"We have primarily demanded creation of additional
storage space and movement of wheat and rice at a faster pace
so as to use the space for storing fresh crop," state food
supplies director DS Grewal told PTI today.

The demand assumes significance as the threat of storage
crisis looms large in Punjab, with the state facing severe
space crunch to store fresh crop due to the tardy movement of
stocks to other states on top of the already existing lack of
storage facilities.

The threat of storage crisis can also be gauged from
the fact that the state`s godowns are brimming with a whopping
167 lakh tonne wheat stock and 42 lakh tonne rice. Punjab at
present has a total storage capacity of 184 lakh tonne only.

Punjab has also stressed on speedier outbound movement
of stocks from the state. "We have asked them to ensure fast
transfer of stock from the state," Grewal said.

Against the current movement of 12-14 lakh tonne, the
state is demanding that it should be on a much higher scale so
that the vacated space could be used for storing fresh crop.

Meanwhile, sudden heavy arrival of wheat to the markets
has hit the lifting process. With wheat arrival reaching its
peak, the daily arrival of crop has touched the highest mark
of 9 lakh tonne against the state`s capacity of lifting 4 lakh
tonne a day.

"We have seen a record jump in daily arrival at 8-9
lakh tonne in comparison to our lifting capacity of 4 lakh
tonne which has affected lifting exercise in the mandis," a
senior official said. Farmers across the state are complaining
of non-lifting of crop by state agencies.

Government agencies and private millers have procured
61.68 lakh tonne wheat so far from the state, with state
agencies lifting 99 per cent of total arrival of crop.

-PTI



First Published: Monday, April 19, 2010 - 23:33

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