The committee on Minimum Support Price (MSP) is scheduled to hold its first meeting on August 22 to discuss future strategies, according to official sources.The meeting will be held at 10.30 am at the National Agriculture Science Complex (NASC) in the national capital, the sources added.
In the first meeting, sources said the committee will introduce members, deliberate on “future strategies” and discuss setting up sub-panels to cover the wide issues mentioned in the terms of reference.
Meanwhile, the government is persuading Samyukta Kisan Morcha (SKM) to take part in the proceedings of the committee, it needs to be seen if it will change its mind and nominate three representatives, sources added. SKM, which necessitated setting up of this committee after leading farmers’ protest against three farm laws and forcing the government to repeal them, has already rejected this committee and decided not to nominate its representatives.
While announcing the repeal of three farm laws in November last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised to set up a committee to look into farmers’ MSP issues. The committee, headed by former agriculture secretary Sanjay Agrawal, was constituted on July 18 to “promote zero budget based farming”, to “change” crop patterns keeping in mind the changing needs of the country, and to make MSP more “effective and transparent”.
There are 26 members including the chairman of the committee and three membership slots kept aside for representatives of SKM.The members of the committee include: Niti Aayog member Ramesh Chand, agri-economists CSC Shekhar from Indian Institute of Economic Development and Sukhpal Singh from IIM-Ahmedabad and Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) senior member Naveen P Singh.Among farmer representatives, the committee has National award-winning farmer Bharat Bhushan Tyagi, and five members from other farmer organisations include Gunwant Patil, Krishnaveer Choudhary, Pramod Kumar Choudhary, Guni Prakash and Sayyed Pasha Patel.
Two members of the farmers’ cooperative and group — IFFCO Chairman Dilip Sanghani and CNRI General Secretary Binod Anand — are also part of the committee.Senior members of agricultural universities, five central government secretaries and chief secretaries of Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Sikkim and Odisha are also part of the committee.