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Centre announces new MSPs of kharif crops amid farm stir; hike favours, oilseeds, pulses

By Saima Siddiqui 
Updated Date

New Delhi: The Union cabinet on Wednesday announced new minimum support price of 14 kharif crops or summer-sown crops, supporting a hike of Rs 72 per to Rs 1,940 per quintal for 2021-22 crop year from Rs 1,868 per quintal last year.

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The highest absolute increase in MSP over the previous year has, however, been announced for sesamum (Rs 452 per quintal) followed by tur and urad (Rs 300 per quintal each). But, the expected returns to farmers over their cost of production are estimated to be highest in case of Bajra (85%) followed by urad (65%) and tur (62%). For rest of the crops, return to farmers over their cost of production is estimated to be at least 50%.

In the case of groundnut and nigerseed, there has been an increase of Rs 275 per quintal and Rs 235 per quintal, respectively, in comparison to last year. The differential remuneration is aimed at encouraging crop diversification, an official release said.

The hike is in sync with the government’s plan to encourage farmers to go for coarse cereals (nutri-cereals), oilseeds and pulses in a big way.

The hike, recommended by the Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices (CACP), was approved by the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Wednesday.

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“The differential remuneration is aimed at encouraging crop diversification,” said agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar while announcing the Cabinet’s decision.

He said, “The increase in MSP for kharif crops for marketing season 2021-22 is in line with the 2018-19 Budget announcement of fixing the MSPs at a level of at least 1.5 times of the All-India weighted average Cost of Production (CoP), aiming at reasonably fair remuneration for the farmers.”

“Concerted efforts were made over the last few years to realign the MSPs in favour of oilseeds, pulses and coarse cereals to encourage farmers shift to larger area under these crops and adopt best technologies and farm practices, to correct demand – supply imbalance,” said Tomar.

He said the added focus on nutri-rich nutri-cereals was to incentivize its production in the areas where rice-wheat cannot be grown without long term adverse implications for groundwater table.

In order to increase the acreage of oilseeds, the agriculture ministry has recently approved an ambitious plan for the free distribution of high-yielding varieties of seeds to the farmers for the kharif season 2021 in the form of mini-kits. The special kharif programme is expected to bring an additional 6.37 lakh hectare area under oilseeds. It is likely to produce 120.26 lakh quintals of oilseeds, amounting to 24.36 lakh quintals of edible oil.

Besides, in order to attain self-sufficiency in the production of pulses, a special kharif strategy has been prepared for implementation in the ensuing kharif 2021 season.

“A detailed plan for both area expansion and productivity enhancement for Tur, Moong, and Urad has been formulated. Under the strategy, all the available high-yielding varieties (HYVs) of seeds will be distributed free of cost to increase acreage under pulses,” said the minister.

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