Prof M S Swaminathan for hiking MSP for Paddy to Rs 1000 per quintal

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Hyderabad, Jul 2 (UNI) Taking up cudgels for paddy growers, noted agricultural scientist M S Swaminathan has opined that the support price should be increased to Rs 1000 per quintal, taking into account the cost the Centre would have to incur in case of import.

The demand by farmers was far less a price when compared to import cost which stood at Rs 4000 per quintal, he paid while delivering a lecture yesterday in memory of Communist Party of India (Marxist) Politbureau member late Koratala Satyanarayana. At the time of procurement, the cost escalation should also be taken into account.

Pressing for an assured and remunerative marketing for all farm produce as against the MSP provided for only 25 crops, he said MSP should be calculated by assessing the cost of production and provide at least 50 per cent profit in view of the Sector being subject to uncertainties of nature.

He suggested issuing of smart cards with specific entitlements to farmers who contributed to nutrition safety net programmes to compensate them on the basis of price escalation.

He also stressed the need for universal public distribution system and enlarge the food basket to include maize, Jowar, Bajra, millets and other nutritional grains.

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