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Include maize in crop procurement list: Punjab to Centre

Posted on Aug 27 2014 | IANS

Chandigarh, Aug 27 : Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal Wednesday urged the central government to add maize to the crop procurement list of the National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India Ltd (NAFED) to enable it procure maize from his state.

Badal said the state government has identified maize, cotton, oil-seed crops, pulses and agro-forestry as alternative crops to break the rotation of wheat and paddy, making agriculture not only more sustainable but also environment-friendly.

Punjab, India's green revolution state, is the biggest contributor to the national food grain kitty despite having just 1.54 percent geographical area of the country.

Farmers in the state mainly rely on growing wheat and paddy every year. This has led to depletion of the ground water level, especially due to paddy cultivation.

Badal, who held a meeting with senior functionaries of the National Cooperative Union of India (NCUI) and NAFED here Wednesday, asked the NAFED officials to provide a proper marketing solution for maize and oil-seed crops.

NAFED chairman V.R. Patel assured commencement of maize procurement from Punjab immediately after getting permission from the Centre.

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