Monday, September 16, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Markfed rice plant incurs loss
Our Correspondent

Tarn Taran, September 15
Performance of Markfed’s first modern rice plant at Naushehra Pannuan installed only one and half years back with the Korean technology at a cost of Rs 3 crore has upset the local and higher officials of the venture.

The unit plant installed in January 2001 was inaugurated by Mr Parkash Singh Badal, the then Chief Minister, Punjab, Mr Ranjit Singh Brahmpura was Minister for Cooperation, Punjab and looked after Markfed too.

At the time of inauguration, Mr Parkash Singh Badal had announced that the plant would produce more rice and ensure yield of 67 per cent, lesser broken percentage i.e. 12 to 15 per cent compared to 25 to 30 per cent in existing mills.

The performance of the plant has not been satisfactory as the percentage of broken rice has been more 50 quiet high. Officials concerned want the plant repaired to reduce the percentage of broken rice.

Mr Surinder Pal Singh, technical foreman, of the plant said today that the plant needed major repair to check high percentage of broken rice. The repair may cost Rs 1 crore and remaining machinery too would have to be changed very soon. Mr Surinder Pal Singh said that Korean technology did not suit our paddy leading to higher percentage of broken rice. There are five more Korean mills installed at Gidderbaha, Batala, Jaitu, Chuslewar (Patti) and Goniana. These mills too are running in loss of crores. Markfed has four other rice mills of Indian technology at Rajpura Machhiwara, Nawanshahr, and Baghapurana. These mills reportedly has been giving good results for the past several years.

A high-level probe into the matter may bring out serious irregularities.

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