Rains so far good; will help produce 102 million tonnes rice: Agriculture secretary

The progress of southwest monsoon and its spread across the country is ‘perfect’ till date, agriculture secretary PK Basu said, adding that he hoped that the area under paddy and other kharif crops will be better than last year

New Delhi: Buoyed by initial progress of monsoon, the government expects to achieve a record rice production of 102 million tonnes in the 2011-12 crop year, reports PTI quoting a top official of the agriculture ministry.

“This year, the starting of monsoon rains have been damn good. If this kind of rains continue, I am confident that the country’s rice production will touch 102 million tonnes,” agriculture secretary PK Basu said in an interview to PTI.

The progress of southwest monsoon and its spread across the country is ‘perfect’ till date, he said, adding that he hoped that the area under paddy and other kharif crops will be better than last year.

However, he said, “But we have to watch rains in July month as they are very important for sowing of kharif crops.”

The agriculture ministry has fixed a target of 102 million tonnes for the 2011-12 crop year (July-June). Bulk of the paddy is sown in the kharif season, which has already started from the current month.

Mr Basu further said the sowing of kharif crops is not in full swing and the announcement of hike in the minimum support price (MSP) will help farmers to take a considered view on what to plant in the current season.

The government announced a hike of up to 16% in the MSP of kharif crops. MSP of paddy (common) has been fixed at Rs1,080 per quintal, while that of cotton (long length staple) at Rs3,300 per quintal.

Southwest monsoon set in over Kerala on 29th May, two days earlier than the forecast made by the India Meteorological Department (IMD).

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Punj Lloyd wins Rs678crore order from N-Power Corp

The contract is scheduled to be completed in four years

Punj Lloyd Group today said it has won an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) order worth Rs678 crore order from Nuclear Power Corporation for piping work at four pressurised heavy water reactors of the state-run firm.

"The scope of the work includes engineering, procurement, erection and commissioning of nuclear equipment and piping for all the systems inside the nuclear reactor buildings," Punj Lloyd said in a communique to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Out of the four pressurised heavy water reactors (PHWRs), each having 700MW capacity, two are located at Kakrapara Atomic Power project in Gujarat and two at Rajasthan Atomic Power Project, near Kota.

The contract is scheduled to be completed in four years, the company said.

On Monday, Punj Lloyd ended 7.59% up at Rs70.85 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.01% to 18,266.03.

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L&T’s Electrical & Automation to supply meters to WBSEDCL

The value of the order is Rs110.31 crore

The Electrical & Automation (E&A) business of Larsen & Toubro (L&T) has been awarded an order for supply of energy meters by the West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company (WBSEDCL). The value of the order is Rs110.31 crore.

The Metering & Protection Systems (MPS) business unit of E&A will supply 12.6 lakh single-phase energy meters to WBSEDCL in a time frame of 12 months between June 2011 and May 2012

"This order is an expression of WBSEDCL's confidence in L&T meters and our capability of meeting their requirements on technology, timely delivery and service. We strive to deliver cost-effective, environment conducive, customised products on existing platforms that facilitate clinching orders and serving our customers. We have a wide range of products and solutions in the electricity distribution segment that compete with the best in the world," said SC Bhargava, senior vice president and head of E&A.

MPS has a modern manufacturing facility in Mysore with certified sophisticated testing facilities for strict quality control. Its installed/current capacity is for over 4 million single-phase meters and three-phase meters. The production crossed a milestone of two million meters in 2010-11. The hallmark of manufacturing is systematic monitoring and evaluation of the quality of input material, critical components, assemblies, testing and inspection processes that ensure compliance with quality standards and parameters prescribed by the customers.

On Monday, L&T ended 0.84% up at Rs1,707.90 on the Bombay Stock Exchange, while the benchmark Sensex declined 0.01% to 18,266.03.

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