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AIKS Accuses Govt of Inflicting Losses on Farmers with Unfair MSP Announcement

On Wednesday, the government announced a significant increase in the MSP for paddy, raising it by Rs 143 to reach Rs 2,183 per quintal for this year. This increase represents the second steepest rise in the last decade.

Shivam Dwivedi
AIKS Accuses Govt of Inflicting Losses on Farmers with Unfair MSP Announcement (Photo Source: Pixabay)
AIKS Accuses Govt of Inflicting Losses on Farmers with Unfair MSP Announcement (Photo Source: Pixabay)

The All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) has strongly criticized the Indian government's recently announced Minimum Support Prices (MSP) for the Kharif Season, alleging that it will result in significant losses for farmers. The Union government revealed the MSP for the Kharif Season 2023-24 on June 7, prompting the AIKS to express disappointment and concern over the decision.

In a statement, the AIKS denounced the MSP as unfair and claimed that it shattered the hopes of farmers while imposing substantial financial burdens on them. Contrary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's promise of doubling farmers' incomes, the AIKS argued that the rising input costs combined with the unfair MSP would push numerous farmers, especially small and marginal ones, as well as tenants, into debt.

Ashok Dhawale, the President of AIKS, accused the government of failing to fulfill its commitment to provide MSP according to the Swaminathan Commission's recommendation of C2 (production cost definition) plus 50 percent. He remarked that this promise remained an unfulfilled electoral pledge, as no crop had its MSP fixed according to this formula.

According to the AIKS, the non-implementation of C2 plus 50 percent has resulted in paddy farmers suffering losses of approximately Rs 683.5 per quintal. With an estimated productivity of about 4 tonnes per hectare, the losses incurred would amount to around Rs 27,340 per hectare when considering C2 costs.

The AIKS highlighted losses ranging from around Rs 2,000 to over Rs 3,000 per quintal in crops such as Arhar, Moong, Urad, Sunflower, Sesamum, Nigerseed, and Cotton. Furthermore, the organization calculated that Jowar crop losses equaled Rs 1,069 per quintal, Bajra losses stood at Rs 216 per quintal, and losses for crops like Arhar and Urad amounted to Rs 1,989 and Rs 2,408 per quintal, respectively.

The AIKS also pointed out that the estimated production costs for paddy in states such as Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Karnataka, Kerala, Maharashtra, Punjab, Tamil Nadu, Telangana, and West Bengal were higher than those projected by the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP). Similarly, state projections exceeded CACP projections for most crops. Consequently, the AIKS demanded that the BJP-led Union government revise the MSP and increase it in accordance with the C2+50 percent formula, while also guaranteeing procurement.

In addition, the AIKS criticized the exclusion of Jammu and Kashmir from the collection of CS data since the abrogation of Article 370. The organization urged the BJP government to include Jammu and Kashmir and ensure procurement from farmers in the region. The AIKS called upon all its units to protest against the alleged betrayal of farmers by the Narendra Modi-led BJP government and expose what they deemed fraudulent claims.

The MSP for the 2023-24 Kharif crops has been increased by 5.3 to 10.35 percent, with absolute increases ranging from Rs 128 to Rs 805 per quintal.

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