Telangana is gearing up for the procurement season, with the state government lining up about 400 cotton procurement centres across the state. Cotton farmers went for sowing on a record 46 lakh acres, against the normal area of 41 lakh acres, despite the productivity challenges they faced last year, expecting minimum guarantee returns from the fibre crop. Telangana Irrigation and Marketing Minister T Harish Rao asked the officials of Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) to open 25 procurement centres by October 10. While the marketing yards would buy cotton at about 100 centres, private ginning mills would open 288 centres by October 20. But the domination of ginning mills in procurement is attracting criticism from farmers. Meanwhile, a team of scientists from Prof Jayashankar Telangana State Agriculture University (PJTSAU) found that the ginning mills proved to be home for dormant pink bollworms that come with the produce from farmers. They found advancement of pink bollworm attack by a couple of months in some areas surrounding the ginning mills, triggering concerns among scientists and farmers.