Cabinet okays `15,053 cr purchase policy to assure MSP to farmers
New Delhi: Ahead of the 2019 polls, the government Wednesday announced a Rs 15,053-crore procurement policy allowing states to choose a compensation scheme and rope in private agencies for procurement to ensure a remunerative price to farmers.
The new umbrella policy 'Pradhan Mantri Annadata Aay SanraksHan Abhiyan' (PM-AASHA) was approved in the Cabinet meeting, headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, held here.
"The PM-AASHA is aimed at ensuring remunerative prices to the farmers for their produce as announced in the Union Budget for 2018. This is a historic decision," Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh told reporters after the Cabinet meeting. Under the PM-AASHA, states would be allowed to choose from three schemes -- existing Price Support Scheme (PSS), newly designed Price Deficiency Payment Scheme (PDPS) and Pilot of Private Procurement Stockist Scheme (PPSS)-- to undertake procurement when prices of commodities fall below the MSP level, he said. The Cabinet has sanctioned Rs 15,053 crore to implement the PM-AASHA in the next two financial years, of which Rs 6,250 crore will be spent this year.
That apart, the credit line for procurement agencies has been enhanced by providing additional government guarantee of Rs 16,550 crore, taking the total to Rs 45,550 crore.
The government mentioned that the PDPS is on the lines of Madhya Pradesh government's Bhavantar Bhugtan Yojana (BBY), but will protect oilseeds farmers only.
Under the PDPS, the government will pay to growers the difference between the MSP and monthly average price of oilseeds quoted in wholesale market. This would be implemented for up to 25 per cent of the oilseeds production in a state. Under the MSP policy, the government fixes the rates for 23 notified crops grown in kharif and rabi seasons.