Govt mulls changes to farm support prices
NEW DELHI: The government could move away from large hikes in support prices for farmers, agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh hinted on Wednesday, signalling a key farm policy shift aimed at rationalising subsidies and taming inflation.
The minister said some people thought the “only way to shore up farmer income is through minimum support prices”.
“Wrong. This alone won’t do unless farmers diversify their activities into livestock, kitchen gardens, fishery etc. That’s our focus,” Singh said during a free-wheeling web chat with farmers.
MSP is the price set by the government for various farm commodities, which help boost farmer income by acting as a floor price for private traders. Farmers also tend to focus on those crops which fetch higher MSPs.
Since coming to power, the Narendra Modi government has opted for more moderate MSP hikes overall in a bid to tame inflation. Pulses and oilseeds, two scarce items, have been an exception. CONTINUED ON P10