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HindustanTimes Thu,18 Sep 2014

Punjab seeks major hike in MSP of rabi crops

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  letterschd@hindustantimes.com Chandigarh, May 26, 2013
First Published: 01:02 IST(26/5/2013) | Last Updated: 01:03 IST(26/5/2013)

The Punjab government has decided to send a case to the union government for seeking major increase in the minimum support price (MSP) of different rabi crops.

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The case includes the recommendation of Rs. 1,855 a quintal as the MSP for wheat. Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Saturday approved the recommendations of the state agricultural department, asking the Centre to fix the MSP for the rabi crops for the year 2013-14 based on the prevalent input cost, a government spokesperson has said here.

Badal cleared the file to this effect on Saturday evening and asked the director of agriculture to write to the member secretary of the commission for agricultural costs and prices (CACP), seeking streamlined policy about the marketing of rabi crops in the year 2013-14.

"Keeping in view various factors, the MSP of wheat should be fixed at Rs. 1,855 a quintal. The Centre should also fix the MSP of other crops such as barley, gram and mustard at Rs. 1,498, Rs. 3,618, and Rs. 3,400 a quintal, respectively," the spokesperson added.

The government has recommended an increase in the prices of such crops in proportion to the increase in their input costs. The government's argument is that while fixing the estimated cost of wheat in the year 2013-14, the market price of inputs such as seeds, fertilisers, insecticides, pesticides, irrigation and labour be taken into account along with marketing expenditure and weather risks.

The agriculture department has proposed the increase in the MSP after determining the input cost of rabi crops, for which, agricultural experts had analyzed the current situation.

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