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Centre to be urged to bring down Bt Cotton seed prices

Written by: Staff
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Chandigarh, Mar 16 (UNI) Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh today assured the state assembly that he would negotiate with the Centre for taking effective steps to bring down the prices of the BT Cotton seeds and allow the Indian companies as well to market the seed.

''I will negotiate with the Union government so that effective steps could be taken to bring down the prices of BT Cotton seeds and to break the monopoly of a few multinational companies in BT Cotton,'' the chief minister said in the house during a call attention motion towards the resentment among the farmers due to the sale of spurious BT Cotton seeds in the state.

Drawing the attention of the government on the matter, Manpreet Singh Badal of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) said that the farmers were being cheated as they were purchasing spurious Bt Cotton seeds at cheaper rates.

He said the monopoly of three multinational companies, including Monsanto, should be broken by allowing the Indian companies based in Gujarat and Maharashtra to market the BT Cotton seeds so that the prices of the seed be brought down to facilitate the farmers.

''There is a heavy resentment prevailing among the farmers of Malwa region due to the sale of spurious (Bt Cotton) seeds in the region and also because of the heavy price of the seeds fixed by the multinational companies,'' Mr Badal said.

In reply, the chief minister said he would soon negotiate with the Centre so that the Indian companies, which had also developed BT Cotton seeds, are allowed to sell the same in the market.

UNI PS JS SHR RN2330

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