Cotton farmers of Adilabad are rushing to Maharashtra to sell their produce at Rs 8,000 to Rs 8,500 per quintal while market yards and private traders are offering them Rs 6,500 to Rs 7,000 in the Adilabad market citing high moisture content.
There is a huge demand for cotton in international and national markets but there was low yield this season and private cotton traders are desperate to purchase cotton from farmers to make higher profits. Despite this, only a few farmers turned up to sell cotton at the Adilabad market though farmers were offered Rs 8,020 per quintal.
Market yard officials and the private traders in Telangana state deduct money from the MSP or price they offer if the cotton has more than 8% moisture. This, farmers allege, is a way of cheating them.
This practice is not prevalent in Pandharkawada and Bhori in Maharashtra, just 50 km from Adilabad, and many farmers head there to sell their cotton. Besides, traders of Maharashtra pay the farmers on the spot.
It is learnt that nearly 40 farmers who brought cotton in vehicles to Adilabad market yard were disappointed with the lower price offered by traders and went to Maharashtra and sold their produce for Rs 8,000 per quintal on the first day of purchases.
Cotton farmers staged protests on Monday at the Adilabad market demanding that the officials take steps to ensure that private traders purchase cotton without measuring moisture content. They alleged that private traders cut large amounts in the price citing high moisture content and offered low prices.
The Adilabad market committee and private traders said they were finding up to 25% moisture content, but they had acted on humanitarian ground and deducted less amount from the total price.