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Market linkage support scheme – ‘Parvaz’ – launched in J&K

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Govt notifies rates for shipping out agri, horti products to domestic, intl destinations

Srinagar: The Jammu and Kashmir government Thursday launched air cargo service from Jammu and Srinagar airports to top domestic and international markets for transportation of perishable horticulture and agriculture produce.

The market linkage support has been initiated by the Horticulture department under its ‘PARVAZ scheme’ to ensure good dividends of the horticulture produce, which eventually result in socio-economic emancipation of fruit-growers and farmers of J&K by doubling their income, an official press release said.

As per an order, issued by the government, sanction has been accorded to the implementation of ‘PARVAZ’ scheme for shipment of agriculture and horticulture perishables being harvested in Jammu and Kashmir to domestic and international destinations through air cargo.

The order states that subsidy shall be provided on air cargo charges inclusive of airport handling charges for shipment through one or more empanelled airlines by the government from time to time and in the DBT mode to the farmers/FPOs/SHGs and registered intermediaries.

The subsidy shall be paid in the reimbursement mode as per the original invoices/bills of the concerned airlines in offline mode only till August 31, 2021. Thereafter, the support shall be paid through online medium in DBT mode by creating a platform between Directorate of Horticulture, Jammu and Kashmir besides the concerned airlines, the press release informed.

It said the scheme could also be adopted by Animal, Sheep Husbandry and Fisheries departments for milk-based perishables and trout fish subject to availability of funds.

Meanwhile, J&K government also notified rates for shipping out horticulture and agriculture perishables harvested in the UT through M/s GoAir India Limited (Go First) to various domestic and international destinations.

According to a notification issued here by the Horticulture department, the rates have been notified in pursuance to the outcome of tendering process followed by signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between M/s GoAir India Limited (Go First) and Horticulture department.

The notification stated that Rs 128 per kilogram have been fixed for shipment of these products from Srinagar/Jammu to Dubai, Rs 128 per kilogram for Srinagar/Jammu to Sharjah, Rs 29 per kilogram from Srinagar/Jammu to Delhi, Rs 54 per kilogram from Srinagar/Jammu to Chennai, Rs 52 per kilogram from Srinagar/Jammu to Kolkatta, Rs 39 per kilogram from Srinagar/Jammu to Mumbai/Pune  and Rs 55 per kilogram have been fixed for shipment of UT’s perishable agriculture and horticulture products from Srinagar/Jammu to Bangaluru. These rates are inclusive of all taxes and airport handling charges’, the notification informs.

It also said 25 percent subsidy as provisioned under ‘PARVAZ’ scheme, notified vide government order number 49-JK(Horti) of 2021 dated 08.07.0221, shall be provided on air cargo rates reflected in above matrix on Horticulture/Agriculture perishable vis-a-vis Cherry, Strawberry, Plum, Peach, Pear, Litchi and exotic and organic vegetables only.

The organic/exotic vegetables eligible under the PARVAZ scheme would be identified by an Expert Committee to be notified separately, an official press release informed.

“With 25 percent subsidy under PARVAZin place, the effective per kg air cargo charges for cherry, litchi, strawberry, pear, peach and plum from Jammu and Srinagar airports to Dubai and Sharjah will be only Rs 96 while it will be 21.75 for Dehli, Rs 29.25 for Mumbai, Rs 39 for Kolkatta, Rs 40.5 for Chennai and Rs 41.25 for Bangluru. This will revolutionize the marketing of fruits and vegetables of Jammu and Kashmir,” the press release said.

“There has been a paradigm shift in the policy ecosystem in horticulture and agriculture department during the last one year. The focus has been massively broadened from pre-harvest management to integrated post-harvest management for bringing the unique products of agriculture and horticulture in top domestic and international markets,” the Principal Secretary, Agriculture Production and Farmers’ Welfare, Navin Kumar Choudhary was quoted as saying while elaborating on broad contours of Parvaz scheme.

He said that “concrete steps are being taken to empower the farmers of Jammu and Kashmir and double their income.”

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