Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao has instructed the officers concerned that keeping in view the future supply of irrigated water to 1 crore 25 lakh acres and developing the irrigation sector accordingly, resulting in increase of agriculture produce largely, a strategy should be evolved to provide Minimum Support Price to the farmers.
The Chief Minister suggested that through close coordination of Agriculture, Horticulture, Marketing and Civil Supplies departments and by providing minimum support price to the farmer the departments should work to make agriculture profitable.
He also suggested that the department should identify National and International competitors in marketing of our agriculture products and work out a strategy to face the competition. He also suggested that the government should become a vibrant purchaser of agriculture products and evolve a mechanism to see that the private persons also pay minimum support price to the farmer.
Towards this, said the Chief Minister, the department should analyse what are the food needs of Telangana People? What they are eating?, what they are producing?, How much they are importing?, How much they are exporting? etc., and prepare proper and exact statistical data.
Through this it should be worked out as to what to be produced? What not to be produced? What crops are to be encouraged? Which is profitable? Which is useful? And the department should come to a clear-cut understanding on these issues.
To obtain perfect statistical data on these issues, the Chief Minister instructed that the agriculture department by way of a survey to be conducted within next ten days at the field level, should collect a comprehensive information on this.
Based on these definite estimates, said the Chief Minister that crop colonies are to be established in the state. He instructed that the government policy should be in such a way that every agriculture product produced by the farmer should invariably get minimum support price and even better price more than that.
He made it clear that if necessary, the marketing department would directly purchase produce from the farmer and to mobilize funds for this the government will stand surety to the directorate of marketing. He said that within five minutes after the agriculture produce reaches the market and weighing procedure is completed the farmer should be able to get cheque towards the sale proceeds.
He said that when marketing department starts purchasing the produce then not only the farmer gets a better price but also there would be competition among the purchasers. The marketing department should buy from the farmer and export to other states and countries.
He instructed that care should be taken that no one should be allowed to purchase the produce form the farmer which would be less than the minimum support price.
The Chief Minister held a high-level meeting at Pragathi Bhavan on the subject of evolving a strategy for provision of minimum support price to the farmer. Ministers Errabelli Dayakar Rao, Allola Indrakaran Reddy, Government Chief Advisor, Rajiv Sharma, Chief Secretary SK Joshi, MP Vinod Kumar, MLA Sandravenkata Veeraiah, Prinicpal Secretary for Agriculture Parthasarathy, Senior officers Rahul Bojja, Smita Sabarwal, Pausami Basu, Horticulture Commissioner Venkatrami Reddy, Marketing Director Laxmi Bhai, Agriculture University VC Praveen Rao and others participated in the meeting.
“In tune with the thought process of Telangana government, in the recent past, the government of India at the centre has instructed its officers to establish crop colonies in every state. The efforts of Telangana state government to provide minimum support price to the farmer has become a role model to the entire country.
We should feel proud for this. Similarly, to provide even better to the farmer than the MSP the government should take all possible steps. Towards this a comprehensive and integrated strategy has to be evolved” said the CM.
“In Telangana state paddy, maize and cotton are produced largely. There are also large number of orchids. Some other crops are also grown here and there. However, these crops are not scientifically organized once. The agriculture produce is not in tune with market conditions and variations. Farmer gets better price if only the productivity and quality is improved.
The government is taking strict measures to prevent sale of spurious seeds. Henceforth it will be stricter. The cotton crop should be grown only in soil that suits it so that the produce is better. Improved variety of cotton production should be studied nationally and internationally and to be followed. Officials should tour in the paddy grown areas including Punjab and educate the farmers in better production measures.
Paddy which has less calories and less sugar content are to be preferred. The farmer should be educated to prefer growing of high yielding varieties of paddy. There is heavy demand for maize and hence better seeds are to be developed. The tamarind which we use every day is in scarcity and hence tamarind tree growing should be encouraged.
As a part of harithaharam at least 5 crore tamarind saplings are to be supplied to the farmer free of cost. The self-help women groups are to be entrusted with the responsibility of making turmeric powder, mirchi powder and tur dal. They should make pure ground nut oil, sesame oil. Due to this farmer gets better price and women get employment.
The consumer will be got rid of the problem of buying spurious items. For improved agriculture methods to the farmers the agriculture extension officers are to be converted as agronomists. In every Assembly constituency there shall be one agronomy training centre and in universities there need to be an agronomy consultancy” said the Chief Minister.
“If only there is a clear-cut estimate as to what type of food the Telangana people consume, then it can be decided as to what crop may be grown. It is also better if crops are decided and chosen after knowing the better market facility to a particular crop so that better price could be obtained.
That is why the agriculture department officers and staff should visit at the field level and obtain details from each and every farmer with regards to what crop they are growing in their fields. How much paddy is consumed? What quantum of vegetables are consumed? How much dal is consumed? How much spices are consumed? What is the usage of oil seeds?……On these details are to be obtained.
If all these details are obtained perfectly, they it becomes possible to establish crop colonies easily. The government by itself should initiate measures to see that the farmer gets better market price to its crop. The farmers should also be advised not to bring the entire crop at a time to the market but should bring phase wise. For this the help of Rythu Samanvaya Samithis should be taken” said the Chief Minister.
“Every day we consume leafy vegetables like coriander, methi, mint leaves and jeera in our curries. However, none of these are grown in our state but import them from various places. We also like to eat mangoes and sweet oranges which also we import from other places.
We even import vegetables from other states unfortunately. We should overcome this. In our state there are 142 municipalities and the urban population is nearly 50% of the total population. The vegetable requirement of urban population could be met if they are grown in villages around the towns.
This we are not doing. There were days when the vegetables grown in villages were taken to towns and sold there. But these days villages are importing vegetables from towns which are getting these from other states. This situation needs to be changed. The vegetables, the fruits, the other food items etc which we consume should necessarily grown by us only.
Even a single quintal of rice should not be imported from other states. We should be in position to export rice to other places. Lessons to be learnt from Ankapur where the farmers grow crops only after finding out the market position to their crop both within the state and outside the state,” suggested the CM.
“The government should also create an understanding to the people with regards to the better food habits, which is healthy or not healthy. We should encourage consumption of healthy food products. Usage of leafy curries and fruits should be encouraged. Doctors are of the opinion that the “Telangana Sonalu Rice” is better in regulating and preventing diabetics.
Such food products are also to be encouraged. We are also importing certain fruits not only from other states but also from other countries. It is better if we ourselves identify suitable land to grown them and produce them” said CM.
The Chief Minister suggested that the horticulture department, marketing department, civil supplies and other connected wings should form part of agriculture department and towards this the official machinery should be revamped. (INN)