Sugarcane Commissioner Gets Warning Over Farmers Dues

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Prayagraj: With the mounting sugarcane arrears, cane growers have intensified their protests against the Centre, state governments and sugar mills. A few days ago, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Aditya had assured the sugarcane farmers that sugar mills would clear their outstanding within the next ten days, but no progress can be seen after his commitment.

With a warning of stringent actions, Allahabad High Court has instructed sugarcane commissioner to clear the dues of farmers of about Rs. 2500 crores within two months.

The Court has ordered that contempt charges would be framed against sugarcane commissioner if the dues of the farmers would not be cleared in 2 months. Justice Sunit Kumar passed this order on contempt of Court petition of Rashtriya Kisan Majdoor Sangathan convener V.M.Singh.

It has been more than two months of crushing commencement, but many mills yet not paid the pending cane arrears. The rule mandates that FRP amount should be deposited to the farmers’ bank accounts within 14 days after the sugarcane harvest is handed over to the factory owners, but millers failed to do so. They are citing their inability to pay farmers the actual FRP, due to falling prices of sugar in the domestic market.

In his petition, Singh said that High Court had ordered to pay the interest of the dues to sugarcane farmers in 2017, but the state government has not paid any interest on due amounts. The Court has given two months to sugarcane commissioners to settle the issue.

According to ISMA, it was estimated that cane price arrears across the country had reached about Rs 20,000 crore at the end of January 2019.

(With agency inputs)

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