Chamundeshwari Sugar Factory agrees to pay dues to sugarcane growers

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Decision taken at a meeting convened by the district administration

The private management of Chamundeshwari Sugar Factory at Srinivasapura in Channarayapatna taluk on Monday agreed to clear the dues it owed to sugarcane growers. N. Srinivas, Managing Director of the factory, agreed to clear the dues at a meeting convened by the district administration.

The factory had procured sugarcane from growers at Rs. 2,100 a tonne during 2013-14, though the State government had fixed a price of Rs. 2,500 a tonne. As in the case of many other factories across the State, Chamundeshwari factory too had objected to the government’s price and agreed to pay the price on a par with other factories. The ICL Sugar Factory at K.R. Pet in Mandya had paid Rs. 2,400 a tonne. The growers often staged protests against the management demanding Rs. 2,400 a tonne.

They staged dharna in front of the factory, demanding the dues, last week. Deputy Commissioner V. Anbukkumar had met the protesters and assured them to resolve the issue after convening a meeting. As per his assurance, the meeting was convened at the Deputy Commissioner’s office. Additional Deputy Commissioner H.N. Gopalakrishna chaired the meeting.

Mr. Srinivas, at the beginning of the meeting, said that the factory suffered a loss of Rs. 6 crore in the last financial year, though it procured sugarcane at Rs. 2,100 a tonne. “The factory has moved the court, questioning the State government’s price. The court’s judgement is expected anytime in the near future,” he said.

Kodihalli Chandrashekhar, Nanjunde Gowda and other farmer leaders wanted the factory to reimburse Rs. 300 a tonne immediately as the factory had given that assurance in writing before moving the court.

After arguments and counter-arguments for a couple of hours, Mr. Srinivas agreed to pay the dues. However, he did not make it clear in how many days he would pay the dues. The factory had crushed 2.12 lakh tonnes of sugarcane in 2013-14.
(The Hindu)

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