Punjab Agriculture Summit a farce, says farm economist SS Johl | punjab | Hindustan Times
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Punjab Agriculture Summit a farce, says farm economist SS Johl

Renowned agriculture economist Sardara Singh Johl has termed the Progressive Punjab Agriculture Summit a farce.

punjab Updated: Feb 17, 2014 21:38 IST
HT Correspondent

Renowned agriculture economist Sardara Singh Johl has termed the Progressive Punjab Agriculture Summit a farce.

Johl, who was one of the 'late invitees' to the function, said that nothing was going to come out of it. "It is nothing but a drama. I'm not sure but chances are that the government had organised the show with the money it received for diversification of crops," he said, while talking to HT at Pandori Khajoor village on Monday.

"Successive governments have believed in just keeping the experts engaged. They never bothered to act on their recommendations. I, alone, headed many committees from time to time and submitted scores of reports which kept gathering dust. They would not even allow tabling of these reports", said Johl, accusing both the SAD-BJP as well as the Congress-led governments of lack of will to bring about a positive change on the agriculture front.

"There has been a huge policy disconnect," he said, adding that ad hocism on the government's part would neither help farmers nor the economy.

"Subsidy to the farming sector is imperative but it should be given for capacity building. Neither the government nor the farmers understand that the subsidy benefits are not going in the hands of the latter but to the consumers," he argued.

He said it was due to the failure of successive governments to fulfill the aspirations of the people that Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) was welcomed by the people of Delhi with open arms.

"What happened in Delhi can happen elsewhere also. A disconnect from the ground realities can prove costly to the political parties," he added.

He said if AAP and Manpreet Badal-led Peoples Party of Punjab (PPP) entered into a seat-sharing with the Congress for the upcoming parliamentary polls, they can turn the tables on the ruling alliance.

"AAP would surely make a dent in the vote bank of traditional parties in Punjab. It would, in all likelihood, receive clear majority in repeat Delhi elections and make its presence felt in Parliament polls", he added.