Maharashtra suspends crushing licence of 12 sugar mills

Maharashtra government suspended crushing licence of 12 sugar mills for not paying the fair and remunerative price (FRP) to farmers for cane crushed in 2014-15. In addition to this, licences of another seven mills have also been suspended for their failure to pay the dues to the Chief Minister's Fund at the rate of Rs 3 per tonne.

According to Vipin Sharma, Maharashtra sugar commissioner, as on December 31, 2015, the total amount of arrears was Rs 328 crore and this is likely to come down to Rs 200 crore by January 10 since the mills have started paying up.

"About 12 sugar mills that have not been granted permission by the State Sugar Commissionerate to crush cane will be issued revenue and recovery certificate notices this week for their failure to pay up FRP dues. The action is being taken because these mills have filed affidavits in the beginning of the season that they will complete FRP payments for last season ( 2014-15) within one month of the start of crushing for the 2015-16 season. The mills have failed to comply with these conditions and hence, we have decided to suspend their crushing licences," said Vipin Sharma.

In addition to this, these mills will also be fined Rs 500 per tonne if they continue to crush cane. These sugar mills include each three from Sangli, Solapur and Ahmadnagar districts, each one from Pune, Nashik and Satara districts.

In total of Rs 5,000 crore dues, mills have to pay Rs 4,000 crore, that is 80% of their FRP as first installment n the ongoing crushing season. The have paid only Rs 2,600 crore so far.

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