Centre takes various initiatives to monitor stocks of Tur and Urad in the country , In a significant move towards ensuring transparency in the pulses market, senior officers from the Department of Consumer Affairs visited ten locations across four states in India to observe the stock disclosure status of Tur and Urad. The aim of this initiative was to understand the ground reality and take stock of the situation in terms of stock declaration and registration on the e-portal.
During the last week, twelve senior officers were deputed to visit various places in the states of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Tamil Nadu. The officials interacted with ground-level market players, state officials, millers, traders, importers, and port authorities, and conducted meetings with associations of millers, importers, and traders.
It was observed that while the number of registrations and stock disclosures on the e-portal is increasing, a substantial number of market players have either not registered or failed to update their stock positions on a regular basis. Furthermore, stocks under transaction, like farmer’s stocks lying in mandi for auction, stocks awaiting customs clearance at ports, etc. escaped the current monitoring mechanism.
The senior officers were also made aware of how millers and traders/dealers have resorted to holding their stocks in warehouses in the name of farmers to escape stock declaration deliberately. The officers sensitized the market players about the importance of stock declaration and asked them to declare their stocks truthfully and regularly. Failure to do so would result in stringent action, such as the seizure and confiscation of undeclared stocks by the state government.
The visit highlighted the need for increased enforcement of stock declaration by conducting stock verification and taking strict action on undisclosed stocks under relevant sections of the EC Act, 1955, and the Prevention of Black marketing and Maintenance of Supplies of Essential Commodities Act, 1980. State governments and district administrations have already been directed to intensify enforcement in this regard.
The Department of Consumer Affairs is making certain changes in the e-portal to improve stock disclosure data, such as incorporating text boxes for providing warehouse details in which stock is held, provision for dealer/commission agent/mandi trader to upload stock data of farmer lying in his shop yard for auctioning, etc. Additionally, the department is in touch with Customs to take necessary action on importers who have deliberately delayed clearance of their consignments.
The Department has already directed state governments and district administrations to look into the data pertaining to FSSAI licenses, APMC registration, GST registration, warehouses, and custom-bonded warehouses and encourage these entities to report their declarations of stock to widen the coverage of market players.
The government is committed to sustaining its efforts on monitoring the stocks of Tur and Urad. The department has planned subsequent follow-up visits, in addition to the weekly review meetings taken by the Committee for Stock Monitoring under the chairmanship of Mrs. Nidhi Khare, Additional Secretary, Department of Consumer Affairs.
The visit by the senior officers highlights the government’s efforts to ensure transparency in the pulses market. The market players must declare their stocks truthfully and regularly, failing which, the government will take stringent action. The government’s efforts to improve the stock disclosure data by incorporating text boxes and provisions for dealers, commission agents, and mandi traders to upload stock data are commendable.
The government has already directed state governments and district administrations to intensify enforcement of stock declaration by conducting stock verification and taking strict action on undisclosed stocks under relevant sections of the EC Act, 1955, and the Prevention of Black marketing and Maintenance of Supplies of Essential Commodities Act, 1980. The efforts to widen the coverage of market players by encouraging entities to report their declarations of stock are also noteworthy.