Nagpur: The concerted efforts and hardwork put in by Chamber of Small Industry Associations (COSIA) bore fruits as Maharashtra Government recently included the dal mills, rice mills and oil mills of the state in the Package Scheme of Incentives (PSI) 2019 and extend them all the benefits. COSIA took initiative and played a major role in the inclusion of these industries in the PSI 2019. The government move provided a major relief and boost to the dal mills, rice mills and oil mills of the state.
CA Julfesh Shah, Vice-Chairman of COSIA and incentives expert said that previously in the Package Scheme of Incentives 2013, dal mills, rice mills and oil mills were included and were availing all the benefits under the scheme. But when the new PSI 19 came w.e.f. April 1, 2019, these sectors were considered in primary agriculture processing activities and under the aforesaid scheme primary agro processing activities were specifically excluded from it. Primary agro/food processing means a process which turns agricultural produces, into something that can eventually be eaten.
“This category includes ingredients that are produced by processes such as drying, threshing, winnowing, and milling grain, shelling nuts, etc. By virtue of this explanation in the GR of PSI-19 scheme, the authorities were considering dal mill, rice mill and oil mill as primary agro processing activity and denying the benefits,” he said.
But COSIA in its representation time and again categorically clarified that the processes involved in these industries are many more than the processes defined in the GR for primary agro processing. In dal mill, rice mills and oil mills many other processes like pre-cleaning, splitting, high-end polishing, coloring and packaging are involved before the final product becomes eventually edible and ready to consume. Taking this stand, the office-bearers of COSIA on various occasions met and discussed with Maharashtra Minister for Industries Subhash Desai and other top bureaucrats.
The Chamber apprised them of the clarification and also stated that in the previous incentive schemes, they were considered in secondary agro processing activities and finally the plea yielded positive results after one-half-year.
Mayank Shukla, Chairman of COSIA Vidarbha said, the agro processing sector will be immensely benefited by this notification specially Vidarbha region which is having a large number of dal mills, rice mills and also having cluster which can now avail the benefits of the scheme.
He expressed his gratitude towards the Industry Minister Subhash Desai for taking cognisance of this lacuna and making an amendment in the scheme for the benefit of the agro processing units. “COSIA is always on the forefront for taking up the issues of the MSMEs with the concerned authorities and also takes initiative in organising various programmes for the benefit of the industry and entrepreneurs,” he further said.