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Social work and politics can't help improve the life of farmers - Gadkari

The BJP national president, Nitin Gadkari on Friday advocated a strong, centred approach, to rid farmers and the present-day youth of the miseries being faced by them. Pradip Kumar Maitra reports.

india Updated: Dec 09, 2011 20:47 IST
Pradip Kumar Maitra
Pradip Kumar Maitra
Hindustan Times

The BJP national president, Nitin Gadkari on Friday advocated a strong, centred approach, to rid farmers and the present-day youth of the miseries being faced by them.

Speaking at a programme 'Present challenges before farmers and youths', organised by Yuva Shakti Sanghatana in Chimur in Chandrapur district, some 100 kms from here, Gadkari said that social work and politics of development could help improve the lot of farmers and youth.

"Lack of government support for farmers in the form of an acceptable minimum support price and proper irrigation facilities forced farmers to commit suicide," he said. "With inflation spiraling upwards, the common man has been at the receiving end. Inadequate employment avenues have added to the problems of youths," Gadkari added.

The BJP president called for people to have determined and confident approach to tackle grave situations. "Use techniques and strive hard for achieving your goals with a positive frame of mind," he told the youths. "Only then you could match the success of Amitabh Bachchan and Sachin Tendulkar," he added.

Meanwhile, the BJP legislator Pasha Patel who led the farmers' dindi (march) from Latur would reach Nagpur on December 12 after covering 600 kms."I intend to wake up the government to the reality of agricultural crisis manifesting in the form of the unending suicides in the state."

Patel claims to have finally cracked the mystery of the unending farmer suicides in the state which have claimed more than 2.5-lakh farmers in the last one decade. "The Union government should drastically revise the system of calculating the cultivating costs of cotton, soyabean and paddy. If they fail to do so, the rate if farmer suicide--presently two to three a day-will jump to shocking levels," Pasha said.

"Vidarbha farmers have been given loan waiver, subsidized wells, loan restructuring and several packages but all these measures and special packages have hardly eased the distress in which farmers of the cotton belt continue to live in. Suicides are unending. This prompted me to conduct an independent research. During last five years I have been studying the matter and interacting with experts, I have come to conclusion that the system for fixing of minimum support price by the Commission on Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP) of the Union government is totally flawed," claimed Patel.

He said actual cost of production of cotton was in the range of Rs 10,000 to 11,000 a quintal that of soyabean Rs 7000 and paddy worked out around 3000. But CACP has this year fixed the respective prices for the three crops at Rs 3300, Rs 1690 and Rs 1100 respectively. "There is a huge gap between the actual costs and what the farmer is earning, making his occupation perennially loss making.

The BJP is demanding Rs 6,000 per quintal as minimum support price for raw cotton as against the current rate of Rs 3,300 per quintal. "We will not allow the proceedings in both the houses of state legislature till the ruling coalition government announced the increased support price for cotton, soyabean and pulses," he asserted.

According to him, a delegation of his party would meet the chief minister Prthviraj Chavan in this regard on December and submit a memorandum in support of the demands.

First Published: Dec 09, 2011 20:46 IST