Karnataka CM urges Centre to rethink ban on gutka

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Mangalore, Aug 9 (UNI) Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yeddyurappa today urged the Centre to rethink on the ban the 'gutka' as it had deeply impacted the rates of arecanut adversely affecting thousands of farmers in Karnataka.

Participating in a two-day International Conference on the 'Future of Arecanut', organised by Arecanut Research and Development Foundation (ARDF) here, he said in the name of gutka, the growers were made to suffer.

Mr Yeddyurappa assured that he would discuss with MPs of the state to take up the matter in the Parliament.

The Chief Minister said ''The Union Government should set up a Parliament Committee to look into the issue. The Centre also need to rethink and should have an open mind on the issue, which was not harmful to health.'' He said the government was ready to extend necessary assistance to the arecanut growers within its scope. The government had provided free power to the 17 lakh small and marginal farmers, including arecanut growers, he added.

He also called upon the agricultural scientists to take up intensive research on alternative and mixed crop cultivation, as the growers had been badly affected by pests.

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