Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Friday held a meeting with farmers’ representatives from across the state before announcing an agriculture roadmap for 2017-22. Speaking after the meeting, Nitish reiterated his reservations against Genetically Modified mustard. “GM seeds would be dangerous for farmers. I have already taken up the matter with the Centre,” he said.
The state government received 534 suggestions on agriculture, 75 on animal husbandry, 25 each on fishery, cooperative and forest and environment, and 15 on sugarcane. Sunil Kumar, a farmer from Kaimur, listed the problems of the agriculture department before Nitish. “Let me speak the truth. I am not an opponent of the CM but must tell him about the ground realities,” he said.
Several other farmers complained that subsidy and grants had not been reaching them due to a lack of proper survey to identify real beneficiaries. Following the meeting, the CM and his cabinet colleagues sat on the ground to eat with the farmers. The farmers were served puri, pulao, pulses and three vegetable dishes.