The Congress on Thursday accused the government of not fulfilling the promise of doubling farmers’ income and demanded a white paper on their earnings since 2004.
The All India Kisan Congress, a department of the opposition party, said the Bharatiya Janata Party’s claim of doubling of farmers’ income by 2022 is just a myth. In reality, their income has come down during the NDA regime.
”In February 2016, PM Modi had promised doubling of farmers’ income by 2022. What to speak of doubling their income, if the inflation is accounted for, the farmers’ income has actually reduced during these years,” Kisan Congress chairman Sukhpal Singh Khaira told a press conference here.
He cited the National Sample Survey of 2018 and said it was actually the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government between 2004 and 2014 which had ”more than doubled the farmers’ income”.
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He said the minimum support price (MSP) for crops is one of the basic parameters of determining the income of farmers. He said the UPA government doubled the MSP of wheat and paddy — two main crops — within eight years of coming to power.
During the Congress regime, the MSP for wheat was Rs 640 per quintal in 2004 and it went up to Rs 1,400 per quintal for the 2013-14 season. Similarly, the MSP for paddy in 2004 was Rs 560 per quintal and it which went up to Rs 1,310 per quintal in 2013-14.
In strong contrast, Khaira said, the MSP for both paddy and wheat did not increase by more than 50 per cent during the BJP regime.
”After independence, the Modi government is the first regime which imposed GST on pesticides, fertilisers and farm appliances…” he said.
”Doubling of farmers’ income was another epic ‘jumla’ of Prime Minister Narendra Modi,” he alleged.
Questioning Prime Minister Modi’s silence on the non-fulfilment of his promise of doubling farmers’ income by 2022, the Congress leader asked him what happened to the recommendations of the committee set up for the purpose in 2016.