By Our Staff Reporter
Bhopal, Nov 06
Fishermen in the state will also be provided loan at zero percent interest rate with a view to promoting fish-farming. On the demand of banana-growers of the state, its sale at mandis will be brought under the purview of the Mandi Act again. These decisions were taken at a meeting of Agriculture Cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan at Mantralaya here today.
The Agriculture Cabinet endorsed 17 agriculture schemes for the 12th Five-Year Plan. It is noteworthy that maximum quantity of banana is produced in Burhanpur district of the state. Through sale at mandis, banana growers were getting Rs. 800 to Rs. 1700 per quintal rate. After January 2012 the rate came down to Rs. 400 to Rs. 1000. Banana-growers had demanded to allow sale through mandis again like before.
The decision to make available loan at zero percent rate to fishermen will help them purchase fish seeds, medicines and other inputs in time beside making arrangements for cleaning reservoir as well as boats and nets. Fishermen Credit Card scheme will also be launched.
Country’s first “Farm to Port Integration” project at Pawarkhera
At the Agriculture Cabinet meeting, a presentation on Mandi Board’s current and future schemes was also made. The Chief Minister directed to further strengthen mandis’ infrastructure. It was informed during presentation that a multi-modal logistics hub is being developed at Pawarkhera in Hoshangabad district. It will be completed in three years. It will have a container depot for cargo, railway terminal, three thousand metric tonne capacity cold storage, warehouses of various types, agriculture industry value addition services and truck terminal facility.
The hub will benefit agriculture industries situated within 100 kilometer radius of Hoshangabad. This is the first “Farm to Port Integration” project in the country. It will provide jobs to about 3 thousand persons.
It was also informed during presentation that a colour sorting and grading plant is being set up at Mandsaur Krishi Upaj Mandi. Agreement for it will be made for 10 years. The plant will sort agricultural produce automatically as per global norms. The Chief Minister instructed to set up the plant in other mandis also. It was informed that preparations have been completed for Mandi elections proposed to be held in December.
Horticulture hub to be developed at Bediya (Khargone)
Big weighing balances and new procurement centres are also being set up at every Mandi in the state. Besides, process has also been started to set up Mirch Mandi and horticulture hub in Bediya sub-Mandi of Khargone district. Proposal for pension and housing scheme for Mandi porters and weighing workers is also being considered. Presently, soil testing labs have been set up at 54 Krishi Upaj Mandi Samitis. Labs will be established in other mandis also soon.
During discussions on agriculture schemes, the Chief Minister directed to expand hybrid maize area in tribal-dominant areas. For imparting training and introducing farmers to latest techniques, the Chief Minister directed to chalk out a scheme for sending farmers of the state on study tours of countries like Israel and Netherlands.
The Chief Minister also directed to launch a campaign for increasing community participation of cow augmentation and running Gaushalas. It was informed at the meeting that foundation stone of Cow Sanctuary will be laid on December 24.
Water Resources Minister Shri Jayant Malaiya, Food Processing Minister Shri Kailash Vijayvargiya, Forest Minister Shri Sartaj Singh, Agriculture Minister Dr. Ramkrishna Kusmaria, Cooperative Minister Shri Gaurishankar Bisen, Energy Minister Shri Rajendra Shukla, Minister of State for Agriculture Shri Brijendra Pratap Singh, Chief Secretary Shri R. Parasuram and senior officers of concerning departments were present at the meeting.
Like farmers of the state, fishermen will also be provided loan at zero percent interest rate. On growers’ demand, banana will once again be brought under the purview of Mandi Act. Now, banana will be auctioned at mandis.
Progressive farmers will be taken on tours in country and abroad for training and imparting knowledge in latest farming techniques.
Every lot of seed kit will be tested with a view to preventing irregularities in cotton seeds.
These decisions were taken at a meeting of Agriculture Cabinet chaired by Chief Minister Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan here today. The announcement to provide interest-free loans to fishermen had been made by Chief Minister Shri Chouhan.
Banana was kept out of the purview of Mandi Act in January 2012. Banana growers had met the Chief Minister and urged him to bring banana again under the Act’s purview. Rates of banana had fallen following its exlcusion from Mandi Act. Decision to bring it under the purview of Mandi Act again has been taken in view of growers’ demand and practical difficulties. Notification to this effect will be issued by the State Government soon.
Cow Sanctuary to begin from December
The Agriculture Cabinet was informed that proposed cow sanctuary to be developed on about one thousand acre land in Shajapur district will start functioning from December 2012.
The cow sanctuary will be looked after by Madhya Pradesh Gaupalan Evam Samvardhan Board.