Mumbai: Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said on Tuesday that the new agrarian reform laws would herald in a new era in Indian agriculture, adding that the government was ready to continue negotiations with unions on all contentious issues.
The minister said that the agricultural sector is the backbone of the Indian economy and the Narendra Modi government is focusing on doubling farmer’s income by 2022.
“The minister reiterated that reforms have been done in the interest of farmers and will bring about a new era in Indian agriculture. The government has held several rounds of negotiations with farmer unions and is ready to continue negotiations on controversial issues. An open mind With, “an official statement stated.
Tomar, along with Food Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State for Commerce Som Prakash, is in discussion with 40 protest unions.
During the interaction, officials of the Ministry of Agriculture elaborated on the provisions under the Farm Acts and said how they would benefit farmers and lead to the betterment of Indian agriculture in the new ecosystem.
Tomar stated that the enforcement of these laws was not an “overnight decision”, but rather has been over two decades, suggested by many experts and recommendations by several committees/groups.
These reforms will provide farmers market freedom, encourage entrepreneurship, access to technology, and transform agriculture, he said.
“Regarding MSP, the minister said that MSP is an administrative decision and it will continue,” the statement said.
Tomar said that the government has clearly shown its commitment to MSP with several increases and manifold increase in procurement, including the Kharif marketing season in 2020-21.
He said that the MSP has been increased on the basis that farmers will get at least one and a half times the cost of production.
The Minister of Agriculture elaborated on various measures and reforms the government has reformed during the last six years.
The Pradhan Mantri Kisan Nidhi (PM-KISAN) was launched by the Central Government in February 2019, under which Rs 6,000 per year is transferred to the beneficiary farmer’s account in three installments per year. The statement said that since the inception of the scheme, a total of Rs 95,979 crore has been released so far and 10.59 crore farmer families have been benefitted.
Five rounds of formal talks between the government and these unions have failed to break the deadlock as farmers are insisting on the repeal of the three laws and are camping at various border points of Delhi for nearly four weeks now.
Stating that Indian agriculture has come a long way from food scarcity to food surplus, Tomar said the government realized that pro-farmers reforms were essential to uplift the sector. Every effort is being made to create an ecosystem of farmer-friendly policies to see that the sector goes from strength to strength.