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Haryana: No ‘major irregularity’ in paddy procurement, say probe teams

Officials tasked with physical verification of rice mills say reports will be submitted to government
Hindustan Times, Karnal | By Neeraj Mohan, Karnal
PUBLISHED ON NOV 28, 2019 11:33 PM IST

The inspection teams deputed by the state government for physical verification of rice mills did not find any ‘major irregularity’ in paddy procurement by the shellers.

Officials said physical verification revealed that the stock of most of the rice mills in Karnal, Kurukshetra, Kaithal, Yamunanagar and Panipat districts was as per the records.

The physical verification was ordered by the chief secretary on November 20 after ministers in the first cabinet meeting of BJP-JJP government raised the issue of bogus paddy purchase in the state.

Even police personnel were deployed at the rice mills the same day and the movement of paddy from mandis was stopped.

Officials of the food and supply department said of 316 rice mills that procured about 17 lakh metric tonne (MT) paddy in Panipat district, physical verification of about 290 rice mills was complete

They, however, found some differences in the stock and records of a few rice mills. But this difference was due to higher moisture content at the time of procurement, they added.

Karnal deputy commissioner Vinay Pratap said, “The reports on physical verification of rice mills will be sent to the government. Once the reports are examined, appropriate action will be taken against defaulters.”

Kurukshetra food and supply controller Narender Kumar said physical verification was done at all 238 rice mills in the district and no irregularity was reported.

If there were some gaps in the stock and records of the rice mills they have to give clarification, he added.

Verification was done at 135 rice mills in Panipat, 159 in Yamunanagar and 5 rice mills in Panipat districts. Panipat deputy commissioner Sumedha Kataria said no irregularity was detected.

The leaders of opposition parties termed the inspection “eyewash”, alleging that officials of state agriculture marketing board and ahrtiyas were also involved in the scam. They also demanded the investigation by the Central Bureau of Investigation for stringent action against the erring rice millers and government officials.

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