India may im­pose im­port duty on wheat very soon

Rural & Marketing - - UPDATES -

The de­ci­sion on whether or not to im­pose im­port duty on wheat is un­der con­sid­er­a­tion of the Cen­tre.

“The Min­istry though has not pro­posed any in­crease in the duty, which is un­der process. The Min­istry is though con­sid­er­ing it but no de­ci­sion has been taken,” said Shob­hana K Pat­tanayak, sec­re­tary, De­part­ment of Agri­cul­ture, Co-op­er­a­tion and Farm­ers Wel­fare while speak­ing in an AS­SOCHAM con­fer­ence on ‘In­te­grated wa­ter re­source man­age­ment for in­creas­ing farm­ers in­come.’

He also said that Food Cor­po­ra­tion of India (FCI) is go­ing to pro­cure wheat on a mas­sive scale. “We have a tar­get un­der FCI now, so prices are rul­ing above MSP and so far noth­ing has hap­pened.”

He said that when peo­ple get ac­cess to wa­ter they im­me­di­ately switch over to wa­ter-in­ten­sive crops which are not a very right prac­tice. “We must try to economise the use in the sense that you can share it with oth­ers.”

Pat­tanayak said that the Gov­ern­ment was pay­ing spe­cial em­pha­sis on wa­ter­shed ap­proach for agri­cul­ture. “For all these years our em­pha­sis has been on ir­ri­ga­tion projects and ir­ri­gated ar­eas but what is the thrust area for dry land ar­eas.”

He said that dry­land ar­eas nec­es­sar­ily had to adopt wa­ter­shed ap­proach and they should also be grow­ing cli­mate smart crops. “We should not to feel shy of not grow­ing paddy or sug­ar­cane as most of the land is dry­land and it is more suit­able for grow­ing cli­mate smart crops like mil­lets and pulses.”

“Last year the pulse pro­duc­tion was to the tune of 16.4 mil­lion tonnes but in one sin­gle year we have caught up by five mil­lion tonnes which has been made pos­si­ble by farm­ers and host of ben­e­fi­cial fac­tors - high prices rain­ing in the mar­ket, MSP de­clared by the gov­ern­ment, avail­abil­ity of seed and oth­ers,” said the top bureau­crat in the Agri­cul­ture Min­istry.

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