(Left) A view of market yard in Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) Kalamna. (Right) Vegetable wholesellers selling vegetables in the yard.
By Prashant Dongre:
Billed as Asia’s biggest wholesale market, APMC, Kalamna is witnessing revenue drop since financial year 2016-2017. Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC), Kalamna receives revenue in the form of market fees or mandi cess which is used for development of market yard and providing facilities to the wholesalers. On every sale of Rs 100, it charges Rs 1.05 as market cess. Of this Rs 1.05, Agriculture Produce Market Committee keeps Re 1 for its own maintenance and gives 5 paise to State Government as supervision cost. In the last three financial years, the turnover of the APMC, Kalamna has declined by Rs 300 crore and revenue by Rs 3 crore. Sources said that in the financial year, 2016-2017, APMC, Kalamna had registered a turnover of Rs 2,300 crore.
From this Rs 2,300 crore, it collected Rs 23 crore as market fees. In the year 2017-18, it recorded a turnover of Rs 2,100 crore and collected Rs 21 crore as market fees. In the last fiscal i.e. 2018-19, APMC saw its turnover at Rs 2,000 crore and collected market fees of Rs 20 crore. The revenue as well as turnover of the Agriculture Produce Market Committee, Kalamna market are coming down as majority of the vegetable and fruit wholesalers are operating outside the jurisdiction of the APMC, Kalamna bringing huge losses to the kitty of the Agriculture Produce Market Committee.
“We cannot take market fees from the wholesalers who are not in our purview. Our area is limited to the compound wall of the APMC. We are not having control over them as they do not want to give mandi cess or market fees to our administration,” sources said. If sources are to be believed, daily around 20 tonne to 30 tonne of vegetables and fruits are sold outside APMC, Kalamna. A vegetable wholesaler while talking to The Hitavada on the condition of anonymity said, “Why should we give market fees to APMC, Kalamna when we are not getting good facilities. Our agriculture produce i.e. vegetables have a very short shelf life and therefore our profit margins are very low. If we keep paying market cess then it will be dent in our income,” he said.
A vegetable wholesaler in the Cotton Market said, “When we are earning good income here then why (should) we will go to Kalamna. The farmers who bring their vegetable here are our old customers. Going to Kalamna means increasing the transportation cost of our customers.” In APMC, Kalamna, there is Grain Market, Orange and Fruit Market, Potato-Onion Market, Chilli and Cattle Market and Soyabean Market. The market caters to majority of places in Vidarbha and some parts of Andhra Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh. Nagpur APMC was notified on November 16, 1974 under section 39A of Maharashtra Agricultural Produce Marketing (Regulation) Act 1963, and started working on January 21, 1975.
The Agriculture Produce Market Committee , constructed the said Jawaharlal Nehru Market Yard by spending around Rs 34 crore. All the submarkets existing in different parts of Nagpur were shifted (except Itwari grain and vegetable market as per the Government resolution to Kalamna Market Yard. The development and construction made on the market yard are done from the own fund of Agriculture Produce Market Committee. All the facilities made available on the market yard are from the own source of the committee mainly from the mandi cess.