Farmers threaten stir if new MSP goes unmet

Written by Commodities Bureau | New Delhi | Updated: Dec 14 2008, 05:23am hrs
Farmers have said that they would launch a nationwide agitation in January if their demand for a minimum support price (MSPs) for crops on basis of the formula suggested by the National Commission on Farmers (NCF) was not met by December 31. They have also questioned the delay in announcement of the MSPs.

The NCF, headed by noted agriculture scientist MS Swaminathan, had recommended that the MSP for crops offered by the government to farmers should, apart from reimbursing the costs incurred by farmers, allow at least 50% over and above the cost price from the current allowance of 15%.

The two-day national conclave orgainsed by the Consortium of Indian Farmers Association (CIFA) which concluded in New Delhi on Friday also alleged that there was no transparency in collection of data at the grassroots level regarding the cost of cultivation actually incurred by the farmers.

Participants also suggested that the whole system needed to be revamped to bring in transparency and enable farmers to get remunerative prices by inducting them in pricing body, the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP). We will go for a nationwide agitation in January, if our demand for a change in the MSP computation is not met, said CIFA secretary-general, P Chengal Reddy.