Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda has urged the Central government to either increase the minimum support price (MSP) for paddy, maize, bajra and cotton or announce a bonus in the interest of farmers as the cost of cultivation had increased considerably.
In a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, he urged him to increase the MSP for paddy by at least Rs 200 per quintal, of maize by Rs 150 per quintal and that of bajra and cotton by Rs 100 per quintal, a release stated on Saturday.
Hooda said the Centre had enhanced the MSP for paddy by Rs 60 per quintal over the last year's MSP and fixed it at Rs 1,310 for common paddy and increased the price for grade-A paddy to Rs 1,345 per quintal, a rise of Rs 65, for this kharif season.
The chief minister said the cost of cultivation of paddy in Haryana is Rs 1,757 per quintal and the state had recommended to union government to fix MSP at Rs 1,850, Rs 1,925 and Rs 2,000 per quintal for common, fine and super fine categories, respectively.
He further said that for bajra, the state government had recommended price to be Rs 1,400 per quintal. Hooda said the area under maize had decreased steadily due to poor MSP. "The Centre has been laying emphasis on crop diversification in states that witnessed Green Revolution.
But the MSP for maize at Rs 1,310 per quintal will not encourage farmers to diversify from paddy and sugarcane. The state government had recommended Rs 1,800 as MSP for maize," Hooda said. The MSP for cotton should be fixed at Rs 4,200 per quintal, he added.