Apart from two ambitious schemes to provide irrigation and insurance to farmers, Agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh Wednesday identified “cow protection” and “Indian cow breed improvement” as his priority areas while stressing that GM crops should be allowed only in extremely necessary cases.
“Countries like Brazil and Australia have taken Indian breeds of cows and developed improved breeds, while we are trying to bring foreign breeds of cows. I have asked officials to devise a programme towards breed improvement of indigenous cows,” Radha Mohan Singh said. He also emphasised on cow protection saying, “we will make all efforts towards cow protection and preservation.” The minister suggested only in extreme cases he would allow it. “GM technology will be allowed when it is very necessary,” Singh said.
The Minister declared his intention to launch two sche-mes towards enhancing irrigation coverage and providing “farm income insurance” to shield farmers. Additionally, he announced to launch, in cooperation with other ministries, “Pradhan Man-tri Gram Sinchayee Yojana”.
While saying that he will continue with the existing mechanism to determine Minimum Support Price, he said that he will strive to “ensure farmers get a minimum of 50 per cent profits over the cost of production” in the long-term.