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Big B Turns Seed Grower In UP

Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan has registered himself as a certified seed grower with the UP Seed Development Corporation (UPSDC) for the current kharif season, reports The Indian Express.  He is growing paddy seed on 2.5
PTI September 11, 2010 15:19 IST
PTI
Bollywood superstar Amitabh Bachchan has registered himself as a certified seed grower with the UP Seed Development Corporation (UPSDC) for the current kharif season, reports The Indian Express.  

He is growing paddy seed on 2.5 hectares of land he owns in Muzaffarnagar village near Kakori on the Lucknow-Hardoi road.  

"He had bought 60 kgs of foundation seed from us at the rate of Rs 26.30 per kg, and it is sufficient for two hectares of land. We have forwarded a recommendation to the UP State Seed Certification Agency for the certification of the paddy seed to be produced at his farm," said UPSDC managing director J L Saroj.

On qualifications to become a seed grower, Saroj said, "Every farmer holding valid ownership title of agriculture land is qualified to be a seed grower for us. Amitabh Bachchan registered with us as a seed grower and paid a registration fee of Rs 25 and inspection fee of Rs 275."  

If all went as planned, Amitabh's son Abhishek and wife Jaya too would turn certified seed growers by next rabi season, beginning November, Saroj added.  

The family had bought 6 hectares of land at Muzaffarnagar village in May. Of this, Amitabh owns 2.5 hectare while Abhishek and Jayaown3.5hectare.

The corporation, Saroj said, would inspect the crop at two stages, "the vegetative stage and the reproductive stage, or at the time of maturity, to ensure that the grain has fully matured...".  

Since Bachchan is based in Mumbai, he has hired some men to take care of his crop.

His power of attorney holder Rajendra Singh, a farmer himself, supervises the work. "Growing seeds is most appropriate for an absentee landlord like Bachchan. It will fetch good returns besides relief in income tax," said Singh, who claims his mother-in-law Govind Kaur and Amitabh's mother Teji Bachchan were sisters.  

"I suggested that Amitabh should buy land in Lucknow after the controversy over the land purchased by him in Barabanki district."