Withdraw cut on MSP on damaged wheat grain: Farm unions to Centre
Value cut ranges between Rs 4.8 and Rs 24 per quintal on MSP of Rs 1,925; farmers says unseasonal rain led to shrivelling of the grain and loss of lustre in the crop; Punjab CM has also taken up the matter with PMUpdated: Apr 29, 2020 22:18 IST
With untimely rainfall resulting in shrivelled grain and lustre loss in the wheat crop, Punjab’s farmers are facing the additional problem of the Centre imposing a value cut during procurement. The value cut to be imposed by the Centre varies between ₹4.81 and ₹24.06 per quintal for shrivelled grains and ₹4.81 for lustre loss on the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of Rs 1,925 per quintal. The order came on Tuesday evening.
“Farmers are being penalised for no fault of theirs. First the delay in procurement due to covid-19, then the untimely rain that caused crop damage and now the cut in value due to shrivelled grain and lustre loss,” claimed Jagmohan Singh, state general secretary of BKU (Dakaunda), adding, “Instead of giving relief, the centre has imposed value cut on damaged yield.” He added that farm unions demanded a bonus of Rs 200 per quintal to compensate for their losses.
A Central team had visited Mohali, Patiala and Fatehgarh Sahib districts on April 22 to assess if relaxation can be given in procurement norms. The state has 35 lakh hectare under wheat, with total arrival expected at 135 lakh tonne.
Baldev Singh, a farmer from Bhadson in Nabha subdivision, said, “The new directions will not only result in financial loss to farmers, but there would be difficulty in selling the yield as well. The farmer is not responsible for damage caused due to untimely rainfall.”
Krantikari Kisan Union Punjab president Darshan Pal said, “We condemn the Centre’s autocratic attitude. Farmers will not tolerate any value cut and will launch a stir.”
On Tuesday, Punjab CM Captain Amarinder Singh had sought immediate withdrawal of the value cut, despite allowing relaxations in specifications of shrivelled wheat grains and lustre loss, caused by unseasonal rain.