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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sugarcane procurement price to go up to Rs.2,000

CHENNAI: The State government has decided to increase the procurement price of sugarcane to Rs.2,000 a tonne from crushing season 2010-11. The price includes transportation charges and recovery-based incentive.

For the current season, the government decided to pay Rs.100 more per tonne. Accordingly, cane farmers will be paid Rs.1,650 instead of Rs.1,550 per tonne.

Announcing this in his budget speech, Finance Minister K. Anbazhagan said the government had been consistently increasing the procurement price from 2006-07. The price was Rs.1,025 per tonne in 2006-07, Rs.1,034 in 2007-08, Rs.1,100 in 2008-09 and Rs.1,550 in the current season, which has been increased by Rs.100 per tonne.

Accepting a longstanding demand of paddy farmers to increase procurement price of paddy to Rs.1,000 a quintal, the government had enhanced the price for common variety to Rs.1,050 and fine variety to Rs.1,100 by giving additional incentive over and above the price fixed by the Centre. In the current budget, Rs.200 crore had been allocated for providing incentive to paddy farmers.

In the coming financial year, the government had fixed a target of Rs.2,500 crore for crop loan as against Rs.2,013 crore disbursed during the current financial year. It had also provided Rs.140 crore for waiving the entire interest on cooperative crop loans to farmers who were prompt in repaying their loans. For providing free power to farmers, Rs.295 crore had been provided as subsidy to the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board.

Food subsidy

Allocation for food subsidy would be reduced in the coming financial year in view of the declining prices of pulses and sugar.

The Minister said the allocation for the next financial year would be Rs.3,750 crore as against Rs.4,000 crore in the current financial year for supplying rice, sugar, kerosene and dhal at subsidised rates.

New flood protection works to the tune of Rs.609 crore would be taken up, including the Coleroon Flood Protection project, benefiting Thanjavur, Nagapattinam and Cuddalore districts, Vellar project in Cuddalore and Villupuram districts and Pennaiyar project in Cuddalore district.

As construction of check dams across rivers and rivulets had augmented groundwater resources in various parts of the State, the State had allotted Rs.100 crore for building more check dams.

Construction of a dam across the Kanjampatti Odai in Kadaladi taluk in Ramanathapuram district and forming a 20-km-long feeder channel for 43 tanks would be taken up under the Accelerated Irrigation Benefits Programme at a cost Rs.18 crore, benefiting 4,200 acres.

The Contour Canal, which carries water from the Parambikulam dam to Thirumurthi dam, would be renovated at a cost of Rs.127.5 crore. The canal, constructed 45 years ago, was providing irrigation to 3,77,000 acres in Tirupur and Coimbatore districts. Over the years, its carrying capacity had come down owing to breaches. The move would benefit two lakh farmers.

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