Announcing the highest ever single-year raise in the minimum support price of paddy, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday said the government has fulfilled its promise to farmers.
“I am very happy that the promise made by the government to our farmer brothers and sisters of giving minimum support price at 1.5 times the production cost has been fulfilled. There has been a historic increase in the MSP. Congratulations to all farmers,” he tweeted in Hindi.
Assuring that the government is committed to the development of the agriculture sector, PM Modi said, “We have been taking steps in this direction and will continue to do so,” he added.
The government has raised the MSP by Rs 200 per quintal. The decision, taken at a Union Cabinet meeting headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, will put an additional burden of Rs 12,000 crore on the exchequer.
The Indian Express first reported on Tuesday that the MSP for a common grade of paddy would be increased from Rs 1,550 per quintal to Rs 1,750 from this Kharif season. The government first announced in the Union Budget that it would take steps to ensure that the MSP is kept at least at one and half times of the production cost. The massive hike in MSP is one of the two (the other being Rs 5-lakh health protection cover for over 10 crore families) major schemes announced by the Modi government as it enters the last lap of its term.
The government also hiked the MSP for pulses and cotton. The MSP of cotton (medium staple) has been increased to Rs 5,150 from Rs 4,020 and that of cotton (long staple) to Rs 5,450 from 4,320 per quintal. In pulses, tur MSP has been raised to Rs 5,675 per quintal from Rs 5,450, and that of moong to Rs 6,975 per quintal from Rs 5,575. Urad MSP has been hiked to Rs 5,600 from Rs 5,400 per quintal.
BJP President Amit Shah called this as a historic decision and said, “Modi govt has always taken decisions in favour of farmers,” in a quote to ANI.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh also lauded decision and told ANI, ” Farmers are the biggest producer and consumer but they have never got what they deserved. Modi has realised this and will give 1.5 extra of what they produce. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath said the decision would improve the quality life of farmers and that this will bring happiness.
The announcement of higher MSP coupled with the forecast of a normal monsoon this year could further boost foodgrains output. However, the higher support price could also fuel food inflation.