Auditors appointed to calculate interest over delayed cane arrears

Pune: The Maharashtra sugar commissioner Shekhar Gaikwad has appointed government auditors to calculate the interest on the delayed cane bills of 20 sugar mills from Marathwada during 2014-15 crushing season. According to the report, the development follows a failure of the mills to comply with his September 25, 2019, order to submit calculations for delayed payment during the 2014-15 crushing season.

The Individual government auditors will calculate the interest and submit the data to the office of the sugar commissioner soon.

Shiv Sena leader Prahlad Ingole had raised the issue and moved Aurangabad bench of the Bombay High Court for the payment of the interest on the FRP as per rule. The Sugarcane Control Order of 1966 mandates payment of the FRP to the farmers within 14 days of delivery of cane and 15 per cent interest on it if they fail to adhere to the timeline.

Following this, then sugar commissioner Dr Bipin Sharma hold multiple hearings, which helped in clearing sugarcane dues, but the interest component was not cleared. Due to this, Ingole again knocked the door of High Court for the payment of interest.

The High Court had asked the sugar commissioner to hear the case and take a decision on the payment of interest. Gaikwad in his order had asked the mills to calculate the interest component and make payment of the same within 60 days of the order. After the mills failed to meet the deadline, he appointed government auditors to calculate interest.

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