Mayawati announces steep hike in sugarcane price

November 8th, 2011 - 6:56 pm ICT by IANS  

Bahujan Samaj Party Lucknow, Nov 8 (IANS) With an eye to the 2012 assembly elections, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati Tuesday announced a steep hike in the sugarcane purchase price, making it the highest in the country.

“We have decided to increase the sugarcane price by Rs.40 per quintal for the forthcoming crushing season commencing next week,” the chief minister told a press conference here.

Clearly targeting the four million sugarcane growers, she said: “The state advised price (SAP) for the average variety of sugarcane for the new crushing season has now been increased from Rs.205 per quintal to Rs.245 per quintal.”

Claiming that this was the highest sugarcane price fixed by any state government in the country, she said: “For the early yielding variety of sugarcane, the price would be still higher at Rs.250, while that for the late yielding variety has been fixed at Rs.235.”

To make the farmers even happier, the chief minister sounded a warning for each of the state’s 126 sugar-mill owners (including 23 cooperative sector mills) and said: “Start your crushing as per schedule or else be prepared to face the music.”

“The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) government has always been committed to the cause of the farmers,” she said. “That was the reason I did not hesitate to put owners of sugar mills behind bars who had not cared to start crushing on time.”

Drawing a comparison between the previous regime headed by Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Singh Yadav, she said: “… when I took over the reins of the government from Mulayam Singh Yadav in 2007, the sugarcane price was as low as Rs.125 per quintal. We have given a quantum jump and nearly doubled the price of sugarcane, which reflects our commitment to the cause of sugarcane farmers.”

Uttar Pradesh, which remains the largest sugarcane producing state in the country, is also the second largest producer of sugar. In 2010-2011, the state produced 1,200 lakh tonnes of sugarcane, while sugar production stood at 59 lakh tonnes.

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