Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Sunday urged the Centre to relax norms for shrivelled grains in the purchase of wheat from the state without imposing any value cut.
Wheat growers in Punjab have reported drop in crop yield and shrivelled grains because of the early onset of heat wave.
Mann said he had personally spoken to Union Home minister Amit Shah and Food and Public Distribution Minister Piyush Goyal and requested them to allow the relaxations based on the field data collected by the teams deputed by the government of India.
The chief minister further said he is concerned that despite the passage of one week since the central teams completed their task and submitted their report to the ministry highlighting the extent of shrivelling of the grain, no decision has been taken by the Union government.
Mann emphasized that farming issues are required to be resolved on high priority and the delay is impacting the procurement operations, according to an official release.
The CM said the AAP-government is committed to buy every grain from the farmer.
He added that it is completely unfair to blame farmers and penalize them for shrivelled grains, as this is beyond the control of the growers.
Consequently, his government had expeditiously purchased grains arriving in the mandis, he said.
Referring to the glut in certain mandis, Mann said that it is primarily on account of the Food Corporation of India's inability to accept shrivelled wheat due to non-finalization of relaxation in norms, thereby choking the grain markets.
Mann said he is hopeful of an early positive outcome from the union government and thereafter lifting will improve drastically.
Meanwhile, Punjab Congress chief Amrinder Singh Raja Warring slammed Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for failing to ameliorate the sufferings of farmers which has led to over a dozen suicides by farmers in 24 days.
Reminding Kejriwal of his promise made to a delegation of farmers in the month of October last that there will be no farmers' suicides from April 1, if the Aam Aadmi Party formed the government in Punjab, the PCC president claimed that 14 suicides have taken place in the last 24 days.
Leader of Opposition in the state assembly Partap Singh Bajwa also claimed that 14 farmers had ended their lives because of the drop in wheat yield.
Where is the @PunjabGovtIndia? They must wake up before more farmers' lose their lives! Live up to your promises, said Bajwa in a tweet.
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