Even as the UPA government is under pressure to usher in economic reforms,its key ally and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee today strongly opposed forward trading in commodities introduced by the Centre and decontrolled fertiliser price.
“We can’t accept forward trading as it creates an artificial crisis of agricultural commodity in the market. It is also contrary to farmers’ interest. We want to make the farmers self-reliant,” Mamata said after a meeting with the task-force set up by the state government to control price rise.
Farmers should get right prices for the vegetables they produce and they should have control over the market without interference of the middlemen,she said.
Accusing the Centre of being responsible for a decontrolled fertilise market,the chief minister said “this is one of the reasons for the price rise. Fertiliser subsidy is essential.”
She claimed that with strict monitoring by the task-force,market prices of vegetables and several other commodities had come down by 50 per cent.
However,potato prices remained stagnant at around Rs 14 per kg,she said adding the officials had been asked to maintain a strict vigil against inflated rates of potato.