KAKINADA: The Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD) has decided to source rice and coconuts as much as possible from within Andhra Pradesh.
Currently, the TTD is buying fine varieties of rice from Telangana and coconuts from Kerala and Goa. While TTD board members from AP suggested that the Board should purchase rice and coconuts from Andhra Pradesh, officials opined that coconuts from Kerala and Goa were superior in size and quality.
The members then advised officials to ask AP coconut traders to supply quality coconuts or they would get them from other states. “The TTD has already invited tenders for coconuts and rice through newspaper advertisements. The purchases will be made in a transparent mode and there will not be any compromise with quality,” said TTD Board member and purchasing committee member Ms Pilli Anantha Lakshmi.
The Kakinada Rural MLA added that there were vast resources of rice and coconuts in Andhra Pradesh to supply to TTD. “The TTD’s decision is a boon for coconut farmers of AP. Coconut farmers’ societies can supply coconuts to the TTD as per their requirement,” said Balaram Coconut Farmers Societies Federation secretary Mr Mutyala Srirama Nagendra Prasad (Jameel).
Meanwhile, National Coconut Board member and chairman of Chicacole Coconut Farmers Producers Company Limited, Mr Jawahar Khan, said that they could supply big-sized coconuts to the TTD. “None of the other states can compete with our quality and size,” he said.
AP State Rice Millers Association’s former president and East Godavari District Rice Millers Association president Mr Ambati Ramakrishna Reddy said that Guntur district and Pithapuram and Gollaprolue mandals in East and West Godavari, Kurnool and other areas were growing superfine varieties of rice, and East Godavari Rice Traders too could supply quality rice to the TTD.