New Delhi: A day after passing farm bills- Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020 - in the Rajya Sabha amid opposition protests, the Union cabinet approved an increase in minimum support price (MSP) for Rabi crops for the 2021-22 season.
The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, today approved the increase in the Minimum Support Prices (MSPs) for all mandated Rabi crops for marketing season 2021-22. This increase in MSP is in line with the recommendations of the Swaminathan Commission.
In view of nutritional requirements and changing dietary patterns and to achieve self-sufficiency in pulses and oilseeds production, the government has fixed relatively higher MSP for these crops.
The highest increase in MSP has been announced for lentil (Rs 300 per quintal) followed by gram and rapeseed and mustard (Rs 225 per quintal each) and safflower (Rs 112 per quintal). For barley and wheat, an increase of Rs 75 per quintal and Rs 50 per quintal respectively has been announced. The differential remuneration is aimed at encouraging crop diversification.
The announcement is being made to placate farmers, who are scared that the farm bills will end the MSP support to them. The government has not only increased MSP but has also increased procurement at MSP to ensure remunerative prices to farmers.
The MSP (Minimum Support Price) of wheat, the biggest crop of rabi season, has been hiked by Rs 50 to Rs 1,975 per quintal, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said in Lok Sabha, adding that MSPs of lentil (masoor), gram, barley, safflower, and mustard/rapeseed have been increased.
Informing the Lok Sabha, Narendra Singh Tomar said, "MSP was offered to farmers before, is in force now, and will remain in force in the future and government procurement will continue," adding that the government has not only increased MSP but also increased procurement at MSP to ensure remunerative prices to farmers.
The key points that Tomar made in the Lok Sabha are given below:
- MSP for wheat during Rabi 2014-15 was Rs 1400 per quintal which has been raised by 37.5% to Rs 1925 during Rabi 2020.
- The Price Policy for Rabi Crops of 2020-21 will lead to increased investment and production through assured remunerative prices to the farmers. The procurement of Paddy is more than 74% higher as compared to 2014-15, in most of the states.
- Total MSP payment of Ts 1,13,000 cr was made to farmers during the previous Rabi season 2020 for Wheat, Paddy, Pulses and Oilseeds as compared to last year's payment of MSP value of Rs 86,805 cr which is 31% higher.
- MSP Value of Pulse and oilseeds procured under PSS during 2009-2013 was Rs 3,10,480 crore whereas the MSP value paid to the farmers from 2014 to 2020 was Rs 74,81,071 crore.
- Procurement of pulses, oilseeds, and copra at MSP from 2009 to 2014 was 7.24 LMT whereas from 2014 to 2020 (up to Rabi 2020), it is 170.70 LMT which is 23.60 times higher.
- MSP provides a guaranteed price and assured market to the farmers and protects them from the price fluctuations and market imperfections.
- The MSP mechanism provides a price guarantee to the farmers for their produce and the uniform implementation of this policy across the country ensures equity.
- The number of farmers benefited from wheat procurement operations has more than doubled during the last five years, from 20.5 lakh in 2016-17 to 42.6 lakh in 2020-21.
- MSP of gram has been hiked at an annual growth rate of 8.3%, MSP of Rapeseed & Mustard has been hiked by 7 %, MSP of wheat has been increased by 5.3%, MSP of barley has been increased by 5.7%.
- The focus of this Rabi Price Policy is on incentivizing farmers and make India Self-Reliant in pulses and edible oils. To take #AatmanirbharBharat Abhiyaan forward, the Government has substantially raised MSPs of pulses and oilseeds.
- The procurement centers for pulses and oilseeds were increased to 4089 from 1489 centers last year. Procurement centers for Wheat were increased to 21869 from 14838 centers last year.
- Procurement of oil seeds increased by 15 times during 2016-17 compared to 2009 to 2013.
- Procurement of pulses during the last 05 years from 2016-17 onwards has been increased by almost 73 times as compared to procurement made from 2009 to 2013.
- The Government has ensured that there is self-sufficiency in the production of pulses in the country.
- The procurement of paddy is more than 74% higher as compared to 2014-15. Procurement is more than doubled in Andhra Pradesh, Telengana, Assam, Gujarat, Haryana, JHK, J&K, MP, Maharashtra, UP, and Uttarakhand.
- For ensuring remunerative price during the COVID period, the numbers of procurement centers were increased during Rabi 2020 season.
- Despite lockdown due to COVID 19, procurement of wheat in April and May this year was 389.76 MT which is an all-time record. During COVID 19 an amount of INR 75000 crores was paid to the farmers.
- In Kharif 2019-20, 41982 procurement centres were established in the Eastern and North Eastern region of the country and 89.54 LMT paddy was procured benefitting 18,82,607 farmers.