MANGALDAI, Sept 24 - Much to the relief of the rural vegetable growers and middleclass urban customers, the Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board (ASAMB) has reportedly launched a new �direct from farmers to customers initiative,� thereby checking skyhigh prices of green vegetables and providing minimum support price to the vegetable growers.
The minimum support price under reference pertains to the growers of green vegetables, including those of Kharupetia in Darrang and Hojai, which are known as the �vegetable hub of the State�.
According to sources related to the vegetable growers� association at Balugaon in Kharupetia, the Assam State Agricultural Marketing Board (ASAMB) has taken the initiative to carry the produce of the poor and marginal farmers directly to Guwahati city and to sell it to the buyers at a very reasonable price.
This initiative is aimed at removing the existing illegal �middlemen culture� which has allegedly been controlling the entire trade of green vegetables, thus resulting in depriving the growers from their legitimate due on the one hand and compelling the buyers to purchase the products at a very high rate from the market, on the other hand.
Even though the previous Congress-led Tarun Gogoi Government took up a similar scheme, but the same remained confined within the files, the source added.
This initiative, it may be mentioned, has recently came into effect under the directive of Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and Agriculture Minister Atul Bora, even as the Chief Executive Officer of ASAMB Padma Nath Das transformed it into reality by starting �Krishakar Dokan� at various points of Guwahati city like Chandmari, RG Baruah Road, Uzan Bazar, Bhangagarh, Six Mile, Silpukhuri, Dispur Super Market etc., and offered transport conveyance to the farmers to take their produce and to sell it directly at affordable rates in comparison to other retail sellers.
The ASAMB has also installed display hoardings indicating the wholesale and retail price of green vegetables at various locations to make the entire mechanism more transparent and people-friendly.
The vegetable growers in Kharupetia while appreciating the initiative of the ASAMB, has appealed to the State Government and the ASAMB to make this arrangement a permanent one so that all the vegetable growers of the area could be benefitted.