Andhra Pradesh Government To Help Tobacco Farmers
Andhra Pradesh CM Y S Jaganmohan Reddy today directed officials to get the government to intervene to help the distressed tobacco farmers.
Hyderabad | 18th June 2020
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y S Jaganmohan Reddy today addressed the tobacco board in a review meeting focusing on farmer-trader issues, at his Tadepalli camp office.
In the meeting, officials listed out the challenges being faced by the farmers due to Covid-19, and farmers' representatives shared the impact of the lockdown on the tobacco business.
The CM was informed about how 20 million kgs of low and medium grade varieties of tobacco, which accounted for a majority of the produce, had been rejected by the traders this year.
The representatives of the farmers explained to the Chief Minister that they were asked to harvest the crops, and when they were ready to be sold, could not reach the auction centres due to the lockdown.
They also said that companies that had registered for these tobacco purchases did not participate in the auction.
The farmers' representatives also lamented that the prices were better before the Covid outbreak but were now much lesser.
The Chief Minister then directed officials to get the government to intervene to help the distressed tobacco farmers.
In 2-3 days a special committee headed by an IAS officer will be formed to attempt to solve the farmers' challenges, and the government will fix minimum sale prices for high-, medium- and low-quality tobacco.
The rates approved by the government will be showcased at the purchasing centres during the auction.
Licensed traders and companies will be required to compulsorily attend the auction process for stock purchases, and will have their licenses cancelled if they do not.
The Chief Minister said that the board and the companies should work together in an organized manner and fix a minimum rate for all the 3 qualities of tobacco for selling. Purchases should be made in accordance with the state-set prices, failing which licenses will be revoked.
The review meeting saw not only the farmers' representatives but also the tobacco trading companies present.
The meeting was attended by ministers Kurasala Kannababu, Adimulapu Suresh and Balineni Srinivas Reddy, TTD Chairman Y V Subba Reddy and other officials along with representatives of the trading companies and farmers.
filed in: Andhra Pradesh, Y S Jaganmohan Reddy, Farmers, Tobacco Farmers, Tobacco Industry