Raipur: Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel objected to the central government's decision to make biometrics mandatory for paddy procurement while speaking to journalists in Raipur on Monday. The Modi-led BJP government is anti-farmer. First, they tried to create disturbance in the distribution of bonuses to farmers. We introduced the Rajiv Gandhi Kishan Nyay Yojana. Now, they are creating obstacles in paddy procurement by making biometrics mandatory.
He justified his objection by saying that the geographical location of the state is not suitable for the implementation of biometrics due to poor connectivity and adverse, remote geographical locations, including hills, forests, and areas with no connectivity.
"It will create major inconvenience for farmers in remote and inaccessible areas of the state, hindering the process of paddy procurement," the CM said.
Paddy procurement system in Chhattisgarh competent: Baghel
"The central government mentioned that the paddy procurement process in Uttar Pradesh is unique and competent. However, during the entire election, I stayed in UP, and farmers were compelled to sell their paddy at the rate of ₹1200 per quintal. It is difficult to identify who purchased it. In comparison, the paddy procurement system in Chhattisgarh is competent, proven, and time-tested, Baghel said.
To register protest and request reconsideration of the decision, Baghel has written a letter to the Union government. The CM mentioned that his government is committed to protecting the rights of paddy farmers and will procure the paddy.
"Last time we procured 107 lakh metric tonnes, and this time we will purchase more than 125 lakh metric tonnes of paddy," he has assured.
Biometric system order
The Central Government has made the biometric system mandatory for food grain procurement from the Kharif marketing year 2023-24.
Topeshwar Verma, Secretary, Food Department, Government of Chhattisgarh, in a letter to the Food Secretary, Government of India, highlighted the problems caused to farmers due to the implementation of the biometric-based Kharif system in Chhattisgarh. He states that food grain procurement through the biometric-based system is nearly impossible in the remote and hilly areas of Bastar and Surguja regions of the state due to the lack of internet connectivity facilities.
Registration using Bhuiyan software
It is stated that farmers are registered before the commencement of paddy procurement. The registration includes the information such as farmer's Aadhaar number, verification of land area through ‘Bhuiyan’ software, and the payment in lieu of paddy procurement is transferred online into the bank accounts of the farmers.
State government meanwhile has started preliminary preparations for implementing the system and has also issued detailed guidelines to all the District Collectors.
Notably , after strong objections from the CM Baghel, the politics of Chhattisgarh witnessed an uproar as the Congress party in the state is highly focused on paddy and farmers.