16 teams of finance dept start audit of seven private sugar mills in state

AS many as 16 teams of Punjab finance department have started conducting financial audit of seven private sugar mills, owned by affluent and influential people in the state.

Many of these sugar mills have defaulted on payment to sugarcane farmers in the past despite taking subsidy from the successive state governments. The sugarcane farmers have mostly been protesting against non-payment of their dues.

Punjab agriculture minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, who had ordered the audit, said that the teams of finance department were tasked with the job on Monday. “As many as 16 teams have been assigned. I had written to the Finance Department to provide teams so that everything can be audited and we get the correct picture about what these sugar mills have been doing.”

He added that these teams will visit the sugar mills in the coming days and prepare a detailed report. “We will see then what action is to be taken.”

Punjab has seven private sugar mills, including Rana Sugars at Buttar Siviyan in Baba Bakala, the one associated with former Congress leader and minister Rana Gurjit Singh. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government is already taking action against former ministers on different issues.

Sources said while AB Sugars at Dasuya and Nahar Sugar Mill at Amloh had cleared the dues of farmers, the rest are yet to clear dues of Rs 150 crore of last crushing season. Of these Golden Sandhar Sugar mill at Phagwara owes the maximum amount. The sugarcane farmers had recently…

Read more…