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Production of fine rice low in State

By Ajit Patowary

GUWAHATI, June 11 � Despite there being a spurt in rice production in the recent years, the State is still importing rice from other States of the country.

Sources at the Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board (ASAMB) here attribute this to the habit of the State�s urban people of preferring the fine varieties of rice over the coarse varieties and also to the practice of transferring the fine varieties of rice produced in the State to other areas of the region and West Bengal and Bhutan.

The State is not producing fine varieties of rice sufficiently to meet the demand of its urban population, said the sources. However, the sources added that the amount of rice imported by the State is gradually going down.

Agriculture Department sources here said that in 2010-�11, it is estimated that the State has produced 9.876 lakh metric tonnes (MTs) of summer rice. Of it, about 50 per cent is fine variety rice. Again, in the same year, it is estimated that the State has produced about 38.58 lakh MTs of sali rice and of it, 75 per cent is fine variety of rice.

ASAMB sources said that the State imported 41, 17,735 quintals of rice in 2006-�07. In 2007-�08, it imported 37,44,669 quintals of rice, followed by 55,74,216 quintals in 2008-�09, 28,73,760 quintals in 2009-�10 and 27,59,175 quintals in 2010-�11.

The summer paddy like Boro, Ranjit, IR-8 are mainly consumed in the rural areas of the State, while the Sali varieties of rice produced in the State are mainly transferred to the neighbouring States and Bangladesh. In 2008-�09, an amount of 34,348.65 quintals of rice were transferred to the neighbouring States like Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Nagaland, said the sources.

There is the scope of smuggling out rice to Bangladesh in a regular manner through the Kaldoba and Rangpagli markets in Dhubri district and Karimganj in Barak Valley, bordering Bangladesh.

Instances are also there of rice being exported from the State to Bhutan and West Bengal.

However, official records of such transfers of rice from the State are seldom available, said the ASAMB sources.

The State is known for importing rice from other places like Punjab, West Bengal, UP, Andhra Pradesh, etc. It mainly imports the common aijung, parimal, Sotex, etc, varieties of rice and superfine verities like the Basmati, said the Agricultural Marketing Board sources.

The State exports banana to West Bengal, Bihar and to some extent to Nepal. It exports ginger and turmeric to other parts of the country and the globe. Its pineapple and orange also go to the other States of the country.

About 75 per cent of the jute produced in the State mainly lands in the jute mills of West Bengal. The State, on an average produces 6 to 7 lakh bales of jute in a year. One bale is equal to 180 kgs.

It also exports bamboo whole and split to West Bengal and supari (dry arecanut) to UP, Maharastra and Andhra Pradesh. A portion of the mati kalai dal, sesame and dhaniya (coriander) produced in the State is also exported, said the ASAMB sources.

The State earns market cess from the specified agricultural commodities at the rate of one per cent of their market prices. However, such cess could be realised from the markets of 25 districts, excluding Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hills.

In 2008-�09, it earned a total amount of Rs 29,88,22,289 as cess against a market transaction amount of Rs 2988, 22, 28, 900, while in 2009-�10 it earned a total cess amount of Rs 25, 20, 45, 262, against a market transaction amount of Rs 2520, 45, 26, 200 and in 2010-�11, it could earn a total cess amount of Rs 32, 41, 97, 535, against the market transaction amount of Rs 3241, 97, 53, 500, said the ASAMB sources.

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— Dalai Lama(THIS IS STATIC)

Production of fine rice low in State

GUWAHATI, June 11 � Despite there being a spurt in rice production in the recent years, the State is still importing rice from other States of the country.

Sources at the Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board (ASAMB) here attribute this to the habit of the State�s urban people of preferring the fine varieties of rice over the coarse varieties and also to the practice of transferring the fine varieties of rice produced in the State to other areas of the region and West Bengal and Bhutan.

The State is not producing fine varieties of rice sufficiently to meet the demand of its urban population, said the sources. However, the sources added that the amount of rice imported by the State is gradually going down.

Agriculture Department sources here said that in 2010-�11, it is estimated that the State has produced 9.876 lakh metric tonnes (MTs) of summer rice. Of it, about 50 per cent is fine variety rice. Again, in the same year, it is estimated that the State has produced about 38.58 lakh MTs of sali rice and of it, 75 per cent is fine variety of rice.

ASAMB sources said that the State imported 41, 17,735 quintals of rice in 2006-�07. In 2007-�08, it imported 37,44,669 quintals of rice, followed by 55,74,216 quintals in 2008-�09, 28,73,760 quintals in 2009-�10 and 27,59,175 quintals in 2010-�11.

The summer paddy like Boro, Ranjit, IR-8 are mainly consumed in the rural areas of the State, while the Sali varieties of rice produced in the State are mainly transferred to the neighbouring States and Bangladesh. In 2008-�09, an amount of 34,348.65 quintals of rice were transferred to the neighbouring States like Arunachal Pradesh, Meghalaya and Nagaland, said the sources.

There is the scope of smuggling out rice to Bangladesh in a regular manner through the Kaldoba and Rangpagli markets in Dhubri district and Karimganj in Barak Valley, bordering Bangladesh.

Instances are also there of rice being exported from the State to Bhutan and West Bengal.

However, official records of such transfers of rice from the State are seldom available, said the ASAMB sources.

The State is known for importing rice from other places like Punjab, West Bengal, UP, Andhra Pradesh, etc. It mainly imports the common aijung, parimal, Sotex, etc, varieties of rice and superfine verities like the Basmati, said the Agricultural Marketing Board sources.

The State exports banana to West Bengal, Bihar and to some extent to Nepal. It exports ginger and turmeric to other parts of the country and the globe. Its pineapple and orange also go to the other States of the country.

About 75 per cent of the jute produced in the State mainly lands in the jute mills of West Bengal. The State, on an average produces 6 to 7 lakh bales of jute in a year. One bale is equal to 180 kgs.

It also exports bamboo whole and split to West Bengal and supari (dry arecanut) to UP, Maharastra and Andhra Pradesh. A portion of the mati kalai dal, sesame and dhaniya (coriander) produced in the State is also exported, said the ASAMB sources.

The State earns market cess from the specified agricultural commodities at the rate of one per cent of their market prices. However, such cess could be realised from the markets of 25 districts, excluding Karbi Anglong and North Cachar Hills.

In 2008-�09, it earned a total amount of Rs 29,88,22,289 as cess against a market transaction amount of Rs 2988, 22, 28, 900, while in 2009-�10 it earned a total cess amount of Rs 25, 20, 45, 262, against a market transaction amount of Rs 2520, 45, 26, 200 and in 2010-�11, it could earn a total cess amount of Rs 32, 41, 97, 535, against the market transaction amount of Rs 3241, 97, 53, 500, said the ASAMB sources.

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— Dalai Lama(THIS IS STATIC)