Kailali farmers in limbo after FMTC stops buying rice

DHANGADHI: Local farmers are facing a hard time selling their rice after the Food Management and Trade Company (FMTC), Dhangadhi stopped buying rice from them citing the lack of sacks and storage units, in Kailali.

FMTC has stopped the purchase process during the season of rice selling when it has leased two storage units in Geta to World Food Organisation and other private sectors.

The capacity of those units is 10,000 quintals per unit.

After FMTC refused to buy the rice, farmers who came all the way to sell rice have been forced to stay under the open sky for the last four days.

"We have come from Kanchanpur to Kailali to sell rice, however, we have not been able to do so with FMTC refusing to buy our rice showing various reasons," lamented Bahadur Rana, of Laljhadi Rural Municipality-2 of Kanchanpur. Rana came to sell his 130 sacks of rice four days ago with his brother. They have been living on the road near the FMTC premises since then.

Some of the farmers like Gopi Chaudhary of Krishnapur Municipality-7 of Kanchanpur have returned home after FMTC's refusal.

"The company will have a stock of sacks in two days," claimed Anil Kumar Shrestha, Chief of FMTC, Dhangadhi. "Furthermore, the process is ongoing to rent a storage unit in other areas as well," he added.

Earlier, farmers were finding it hard to sell their rice due to delay on the part of FMTC.

Government had set the price of medium rice at Rs 2,885 per quintal while that of mota rice at Rs 2,735 per quintal.