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Badal seeks Rs 5000 cr technology mission for crop diversification

Posted on Nov 20, 10:41PM | UNI

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today urged the Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar to help the state in promoting Agriculture diversification and demanded a technology mission for the purpose with an allocation of Rs 5000 crore for green revolution areas in the 12th Five Year Plan.

Pleading the state's case before a high level delegation of experts from Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Dairy and Fisheries led by Mr Sharad Pawar, the Chief Minister said that Punjab farmers stood by the nation during its need for food security and deserved to be supported in a big way.

He said the procurement of alternate crops especially Maize through Food Corporation of India at MSP should be ensured to help the beleaguered farmers of the state to shift them from Paddy.

He also reiterated that livestock sector could play a major role in improving the income of the small and landless farmers in the rural areas.

However, it must be brought at par with agriculture for the purpose of funding, interest on loans as well as Income Tax exemptions.

Demanding a slew of incentives to promote dairying in a big way, Mr Badal urged the Union Agriculture Minister to grant exemption from custom duty for import of machinery relating to dairy, poultry, feed and fodder, besides additional allocation under various Dairy Development schemes.