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Sick sugar mill set to reopen

Hanuman Sugar Mill, which has been closed since 2000, would become operational by the end of this month.

Sources in the factory on Sunday said farmers in the town and neighbouring areas, who were earlier reluctant to supply sugarcane to the unit, have agreed to provide their produce to the unit following a meeting between its president, D.K. Sharma, and state cane commissioner Lian Rung.

The sources added that the factory authorities have assured Rung that payment would be made to the farmers immediately after they supply sugarcane. “We hope to increase the production capacity from 2,500 tonnes a day to 4,000 tonnes a day,” Sharma told The Telegraph.

He added that the mill authorities were also planning to start production of at least 3MW of power at its captive unit and sell it to the electricity department for the people of Champaran.

“I expect that the factory administration’s decision to provide immediate cash payment to the farmers would definitely help for a turnaround for the unit and the farmers of the town and its neighbouring areas,” the president of the sugar mill added.

Shambhu Yadav, a sugarcane grower, said farmers were also optimistic about revival of the sugar mill.

Hanuman Sugar Mill has been one of the primary sources of sustenance for thousands of sugarcane growers in East Champaran. The factory has a reserve area of around 12,000 hectares.

Sugar farming in and around the town had come to a halt ever since the mill, owned by Bimal Kumar Nopani, became defunct in 2000.