New Delhi, May 7 (IANS) Wheat procurement has gathered pace across the country as over 53 per cent of the target set has been achieved in just three weeks amid the nationwide lockdown, an official statement said on Thursday.
Government agencies have procured 216 lakh tonnes of wheat in the ongoing Rabi Marketing Season 2020-21 till May 6, against the set target of 407 lakh tonnes.
As per the procurement data made available by the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Punjab is leading the wheat procurement with 104.28 lakh tonnes followed by Haryana with 50.56 lakh tonnes and Madhya Pradesh with 48.64 lakh tonnes.
Due to unseasonal rains, some of the wheat stocks in these states were affected, said the Ministry.
The Centre has already come to the rescue of the farmers by relaxing the specifications for procurement which has greatly aided the procurement and saved farmers from any distress, the Ministry said in the statement.
Lifting of food grains by state governments under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Ann Yojana (PMGKAY) under which 5 kg food grain is being distributed free of cost for 3 months to about 80 crore beneficiaries across the country has crossed 70 lakh tonnes, which is about 58 per cent of the total allocation for 3 months, said the Food Ministry.