Badal slams Centre for 'meagre' hike in wheat MSP
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today slammed the Centre for an inadequate hike of Rs 65 per quintal in the Minimum Support Price of wheat and described it as a 'stab in the back of the farming community.' Rejecting the enhancement of MSP in wheat, Mr Badal demanded its immediate re-fixation at Rs 1,800 per quintal.
He said the Centre should have announced an increase of Rs 500 per quintal instead of the paltry sum of Rs 65, which was "too little and too inadequate" to compensate the dejected farmers.
In a statement, the Chief Minister said the non-remunerative MSP coupled with anti-farmer policies of Centre was primarily responsible for the slowdown of the agricultural growth.
Mr Badal said his government had been constantly pleading the case of Punjab's beleaguered peasantry, which was in great distress and deep crisis, by demanding MSP of at least Rs 1,800 per quintal of wheat in line with the escalation of agricultural inputs.
He said the factors like withdrawal of subsidy on fertilisers and nearly threefold hike in the cost of DAP fertilisers had put the farmers in quandary. Therefore, it was obligatory on the part of the Centrd to announce an adequate hike in the MSP of wheat at Rs 1,800 per quintal for the Rabi marketing season 2013-14 to make it commensurate with the increased agricultural inputs in terms of diesel, fertilizers and pesticides.