The committee would include NITI Aayog's Ramesh Chand as a member as well as agricultural scientists and representatives of farmers.
The Centre on Monday constituted a committee on minimum support price (MSP) with former agriculture secretary Sanjay Agarwal as its chairman. The committee would also include NITI Aayog's Ramesh Chand as a member along with other agricultural scientists and representatives of farmers.
The Agriculture Ministry issued a gazette notification announcing the setting up of a committee in this regard. According to the notification, the committee will look at ways to make available MSP to farmers by making the system more effective and transparent.
The committee's role
The committee will give its suggestions to make the farm advisory body Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices (CACP) independent and also give its suggestions on zero-budget farming. Zero-Budget Natural Farming, as the name implies, is a method of farming where the cost of growing and harvesting plants is zero.
Further, the panel will look at ways to strengthen the Agricultural Marketing System as per the changing requirements of the country to ensure higher value to the farmers through remunerative prices of their produce by taking advantage of the domestic and export opportunities.
It will report on the export of agricultural products to increase the farmers' income.
Besides MSP, the committee will look at ways to promote natural farming, crop diversification, and micro irrigation scheme and suggest strategies for making Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) and other Research and Development institutions as knowledge centres.
Formation of the committee
While announcing the repeal of three farm laws in November last year, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had promised to set up a committee to make the MSP system more effective and transparent as well as suggest ways to promote zero budgeting based-agriculture.
The three laws largely aimed at encouraging corporate investment in the agriculture sector, giving farmers an alternative platform outside of the existing ‘mandis’ to sell their produce and strengthening the framework for contract farming.
The farmers had demanded the committee be formed, among other demands, to end their protests.
Last month, the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, approved an increase in minimum support prices (MSP) for 17 Kharif crops for the 2022-23 marketing season.
The increase in MSP for Kharif crops for the 2022-23 marketing season was in line with the Union Budget 2018-19 announcement of fixing the MSP at a level of at least 50 percent over the all-India weighted average cost of production, aiming at a reasonably fair remuneration for the farmers.
With PTI inputs
First Published: IST