UNION Rural Development minister Chaudhary Birender Singh on Monday said that either radical measures or a farm leader like Sir Chhotu Ram (his grand-father) was required to save the agriculture sector in India.
Speaking at a function at Khatkar Kalan, the native village of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh on his 108th birth anniversary, the union minister suggested that the country should come up with a separate currency for farmers. He added that while incomes in other sectors have grown exponentially, there has been only an incremental rise in farm incomes. He added that even incomes of government employees have grown at a higher pace than the increase in the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of crops.
The union minister praised the Punjab government, saying it had acquired farmers’ land in a much better manner than the previous Congress regime in his home state of Haryana. He further said that while the Congress has accused the NDA government of bartering farmer interests, the same party had given land for the SEZs in Haryana.
Birender also adopted Khatkar Kalan under the Adarsh Gram scheme and handed over a Rs 25-lakh cheque to run various central government schemes in the village to develop it.
The rally on Monday was organised by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and saw the attendance of Punjab Cabinet ministers Bikram Majithia, Sikander Singh Maluka, Anandpur Sahib MP Prem Singh Chandumajra and president of the Youth Akali Dal (Doaba zone) Sarabjot Singh.