New Delhi, Aug 10 IANS | 4 months ago

The Congress Sunday said Prime Minister Narendra Modi's allegation that the UPA government surrendered farmers' interests at the 2013 WTO Ministerial Conference in Indonesia's Bali is "astonishing, irresponsible and false propaganda".

"Modi's statement at Saturday's BJP National Council Meet on India's position in the WTO (World Trade Organisation) and the claim of the BJP government that it alone is protecting the country's farmers and the right to food security is partisan, misleading and factually incorrect," deputy leader of Congress Parliamentary Party Anand Sharma said in a statement.

He said it was India's strong and uncompromising stance under the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government that forced the issue of procurement of foodgrains for public stock holding and livelihood countries on the Bali WTO conference despite stiff opposition from the US, the European Union and other developed countries.

"India succeeded in putting together a global coalition of developing countries of Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean. That forced the developed countries to cede ground and agree to negotiate a permanent solution to change the dated WTO rules which India had rejected at Bali as inherently flawed and unjust," Sharma said.

He said India also secured for itself and other developing countries protection from any challenge at WTO for any breach until a negotiated permanent solution is put in place.

He added: "It is embarrassing that Modi is confusing the right of public stock holding issue with sovereign right of food security. Food security is a sovereign space and has never been a part of WTO agenda."

(Posted on 10-08-2014)

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