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India: Govt takes custody of 4 sugar mills’ stock

In the wake of their inability to pay sugarcane arrears to the tune of around Rs 100 crore, cane department has taken into custody sugar stock of four sugar mills in Bareilly and Badaun districts and imposed a ban on the sale of their product.

Taking strong note of the fact that the four mills have defaulted in making payments of cane arrears to farmers in the region, local authorities have asked the mills to make payments within three days, failing which recovery proceedings would be initiated against them. For the time, the authorities have taken joint custody of sugar stock at these mills and this would be sold in the market under their supervision.

Talking to TOI, district cane officer S K Maurya said, “The situation has arisen in the light of the fact that sugar mills continued to purchase sugarcane from farmers indiscriminately without caring to make payments due to which the arrears piled up substantially. Now, the sugar stock taken into our custody will be sold in the open market. Around 85% of the proceeds of sale will go in the account of sugarcane farmers and the remaining 15% into the account of sugar mills for maintenance purpose.”

One of the mills is Kesar Sugar Mills, Baheri, which bought around 30 lakh quintal sugarcane from farmers but failed to make any payment. Presently the mill owes a whopping Rs 56 crore as sugarcane arrears to around 78,000 farmers for 2015-16 and Rs 40 crore for 2014-15, said officials..

Likewise the Badaun sugar mill purchased 3.23 lakh quintal of sugarcane and the one at Bisauli bought 15.37 lakh quintal. The Saatha sugra mill purchased 3.95 lakh quintal of cane from local farmers but defaulted in making payments. The total sum owed by the four sugar mills comes to around Rs 100 crores, said officials.

They said this is the situation when the government has already declared the purchase price of sugarcane for sugar mills in the state.

(Times of India)

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