Chennai: Renowned agriculture scientist M S Swaminathan today welcomed a Supreme Court directive to the Centre to give its view on revisiting the National Policy for Farmers.
"The Supreme Court directive on National Policy for Farmers is timely," Swaminathan said.
The apex court, while considering a PIL relating to farmer suicides, on August 21 had said: "May be because of the policy, the farmers are committing suicide. You (Centre) file an affidavit within six weeks stating whether it is necessary to revisit the policy which is eight years old."
Also, the court had gone into the holding of yearly meetings of a committee to discuss the problems faced by farmers and said such brain-storming sessions should be held more frequently.
The major goals of the National Policy for Farmers were to improve the economic viability of farming, to strengthen rural livelihoods, and to mainstream the human and gender dimensions in all farm policies, he said.
The policy document had detailed suggestions on its operationalisation, including the setting up of an Agricultural Coordination Committee under the chairmanship of the Prime Minister.?
"Although eight years have passed since this Policy based on the report of the National Commission on Farmers chaired by me was approved, it is yet to be implemented," Swaminathan said.
However, reacting to reports that Swaminathan headed such a committee, the noted agriculture expert said he was not on any such panel.
"I would like to clarify that I have not been serving on any Committee of the Union Ministry of Agriculture since 2006," Swaminathan said in a release.