Kolkata: A former minister of the Left
Front on Wednesday suggested that the Mamata Banerjee government undertake a policy to preserve agricultural land and prevent their use for non-agriculture purpose.
If the state government failed to retain agricultural
land from being converted, it would result in food scarcity in
the state, former land and land reforms minister Abdur Rezzak
Mollah told the West Bengal Assembly while participating in a
discussion on the Governor`s address.
Criticising the government`s plan to set up a land
bank in the state, Mollah said this was not feasible since in
most cases land holdings are smaller and that too under the
possession of large number of share-croppers.
"At best a land-use map can be prepared in the state
for proper utilisation of all available land for agriculture
and other purposes," Mollah said.
Mollah pointed out that a huge land area covering
the premises of many closed industrial units was still lying
unutilised and those could be recovered from the owner of the
Admitting mistakes by his government in agricultural
marketing, he called for a radical change in the sector making
the cycle from agriculture to agro-business farmers-friendly.
Setting up committees would not serve the purpose;
cold chain and other modern facilities were essential along
with involvement of farmers instead of middlemen to reduce
cost of the produce and benefit the farmers more, he said.