Jharkhand: Hemant lays foundation stone for 14 rice mills to boost farm procurement

Ranchi: Jharkhand government laid the foundation stone for 14 rice mills in 10 districts to boost paddy procurement in times to come and enable farmers get right value for their produce. Chief minister  Hemant Soren and food and civil supplies department minister Rameshwar Oraon jointly laid the foundation stones for the new projects which will come up in West Singbhum, Simdega, Godda, Palamau, Khunti, Dhanbad, Bokaro, Latehar, Garhwa and Gumla.

All the mills are set up under the state food processing policy, which was extended for a period of one more year. Under this policy, 16 mills were already set up in the past. State currently has 80 mills but is too inadequate to meet the requirements of the farmers, said chief minister Soren in his address.

“We would require about 100 more mills. On an average, we are growing about 50-60 lakh MT paddy every year but are currently only milling about 15 lakh MT because of lack of mill capacity. But we are focusing on increasing it so that we can purchase more from farmers by giving them right minimum support price (MSP),” he said.

Oraon on the other hand said that they had sent a proposal to Jharkhand Industrial Area Development Authority for 20 rice mills but 14 got sanctioned so far. “Soon, we hope remaining will also get sanctioned,” he said, stressing on the need for also setting up wheat and pulse mills. An official of JIADA informed that under the food processing policy, those investing in rice mills are being given land at 50 percent subsidized rates besides host of other fiscal incentives. “The policy was launched in 2016 and since then 16 mills are already set up. Last week, cabinet extended the policy for one more year. We are now planning to provide land to a few more players soon,” he said.