Patna: State cooperative minister Alok Mehta on Saturday, launched the department’s specially developed software to facilitate online registration of farmers so that they could sell their Kharif season paddy to Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACS) at the minimum support price (MSP) rate of Rs 1,470 per quintal to comply with the state’s paddy procurement drive for the current fiscal.
Mehta said only 8,463 PACS and 521 Vyapar Mandals (VMs) would purchase and procure paddy from the willing farmers by giving them monetary returns of Rs 1,470 quintal.
“This year, the state government has not kept any provision for a bonus to farmers as they are expecting the bumper crop,” he said, adding that the department has earmarked Rs 700 crore for payment through banks to farmers against the paddy sold to the PACS and VMs.
The PACS and VMs have been fully computerized, as per the vision of CM Nitish Kumar for greater transparency in paddy procurement and direct transfer of money to the bank accounts of respective registered farmers, Mehta said, adding that the online registration of farmers would help in creating a detailed database that could be used even by other departments.
The minister said both the categories of farmers – ‘ryots’ (those who own land) and non-‘ryots’ (those who do cultivation under sharecropping system or on land taken on lease from others) – would have to first go for online registration either on the department’s website cooperative.bih.nic.in, or on the website of their specific districts. They would also have to furnish documents related to their identity, address, land, and bank accounts. The non-‘ryots’ would have to furnish self-certified documents on their farmer status, along with a certificate either from ‘Kisan salah are or ward member of the village they live in.
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“National Informatics Centre (NIC) has developed the software,” he added. The software would help send the information update on the registration and the quantity of paddy sold to PACS and VMs to the farmers concerned through SMS messages on their cellphones and WhatsApp, Mehta said.
Since the moisture content of paddy produced in Bihar is more, all the PACS and VMs have been asked to purchase moisture testing machines and drier machines to ascertain the moisture content of paddy purchased by them.