Uttar Pradesh to set new record in sugarcane payments to farmers

by IANS |

Lucknow. March 7 (IANS) Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has said that the state is all set to create a new record in the country as sugarcane payments totalling more than Rs 2 lakh crore were now reaching farmers' bank accounts via DBT (direct benefit transfer) for the first time.

The milestone has been achieved in the six years since the Yogi Adityanath government came to power for the first time in March 2017.

According to sugar industry and cane development minister Chaudhary Laxmi Narayan, Rs 65 crore for the current crushing season was transferred to farmers on Monday after which the total dues paid over the last six years crossed the Rs 2 lakh crore-mark.

The figure had already reached around Rs 1.97 lakh crore last month.

"Barring some legally disputed amount, there are no old sugarcane dues pending against sugar mills though an amount of Rs 3,000 - 4,000 crore for the current season still remains to be paid. More than 70 per cent of the current dues too have been paid," the minister.

The chief minister said, "UP is going to create a new record in the country as sugarcane payments totalling more than Rs 2 lakh crore are now reaching farmers' bank accounts for the first time. Many states in the country do not even have an annual budget of Rs 2 lakh crore."

Yogi Adityanath also said earlier our "own money" went to oil exporting companies as petrodollars that was often used in fomenting terrorism against us only, but now sugar mills in the state were producing ethanol that would soon be seen being used as an alternative to diesel and petrol.

Uttar Pradesh was the largest producer of ethanol in the country today and this, he said, would not only make the sugar mills an important source of green fuel but also enhance income of sugarcane farmers.

Bhartiya Kisan Union leader Alok Verma welcomed the transfer of the cane dues to farmers before Holi, but questioned whether the dues were paid within 14 days of farmers supplying their cane to sugar mills as mandated under the rules.

"Most mills are not paying within 14 days' time-limit and no interest is paid on the delayed payment," he claimed.

Yogi Adityanath further said that since Prime Minister Narendra Modi took office in 2014, the farmer has for the first time been included in any government's agenda and had begun to benefit from government programmes.

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