All input costs to be included in fixing MSP: PM

All input costs to be included in fixing MSP: PM

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said that all input costs would be included while fixing Minimum Support Prices (MSP) of various crops to help double India's farm income by 2022.

Addressing a three-day Krishi Unnati Mela 2018, Modi said needless confusion is being spread about the decision announced in the Budget 2018-19 to fix MSP for crops, at least 1.5 times the production cost.

Modi assured farmers that all major costs incurred will be included while declaring the support price.

The prime minister's remarks were seen clearing the air about Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's statement in Parliament that the government would consider A2+FL (actual paid out cost plus imputed value of family labour) formula.

A section of farmers' organisations have been pressing for the comprehensive cost (C2) that also includes imputed rent and interest on owned land and capital, over and above A2+FL.

"The cost of production will include elements such as hired labour, expenses on their own or rented machinery as well as livestock, cost of seeds and fertilisers, expenses on irrigation, revenue being given to state government, interest on working capital, and rent of leased land among others," he said.

Modi said it would also include labour put by farmers and their family.

"This is an important decision related to the income of hardworking farmers. The Centre is already working with state governments to ensure that farmers get the benefit of the declared MSP," he said.

Modi also appealed to farmers not to burn crop residues so as to curb pollution. He also asked farmers to grow more oilseeds to reduce dependence on import of cooking oil and also to cut urea consumption by at least half by 2022.

The prime minister said the efforts are being made to link rural mandis to APMC wholesale markets to the global market to enhance farmers income. Modi reminded the farmers that his government had envisaged the creation of 20,000 Grameen Retail Agriculture Markets with the necessary infrastructure, and integrated with APMC and the e-NAM platform.

Farmers can market their produce in a better way through Farmers Producer Organisations, which has been exempted from income tax, on the lines of cooperative societies, in the Budget, he said.

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