The State Agriculture Prices Commission has recommended the State government to fix the procurement price of the Red Gram at Rs. 5,350 per quintal by giving an incentive of Rs. 1,000 per quintal more than the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of Rs. 4,350 fixed by the Commission for Agriculture Cost and Prices (CACP) for the current year.
Leaders of the different farmers organisations including Karnataka Pranta Raita Sangha (KPRS), Karnataka Red Gram Growers Association, Farmers wing of the Janata Dal (S), wanted the State government to fix the procurement price of the Red Gram at Rs. 6,000 per quintal taking into account the rising cost in the cultivation of the red gram and increase in the prices of the input.
President of the KPRS, Maruti Manpade who met the Chief Minister Siddaramaiah in Bengaluru on Tuesday told presspersons in Kalaburagi on Wednesday that the Chief Minister had responded positively and assured to implement the recommendations of the Cabinet Sub Committee on the Agriculture Prices headed by Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister, T.B. Jayachandra.
Mr. Manpade who apprised the Chief Minister of the problems faced by the Red Gram growers and the need for the intervention by the State government to save the growers from exploitation in the wholesale market, said that Mr. Jayachandra who was also present during the meeting, said that the meeting of the cabinet sub-committee would be held within two or three days.
On the same day of the cabinet sub-committee, meeting Mr. Jayachandra would also meet the leaders of various farmers’ organisations from the Hyderabad Karnataka region to hear their demands.
He said that the State government itself had recommended to the CACP last year, to increase the MSP of the Red Gram to Rs. 5,950 per quintal taking into consideration the cost involved in the cultivation.
Mr. Manpade said that the State government should act urgently and fix the procurement prices at the earliest and start procurement centres to prevent the crash in the prices of the Red Gram. “Red Gram, which was being purchased at Rs. 5,500 per quintal in the wholesale market in the beginning of the last week, has come down to Rs. 5,100 per quintal now with the fresh arrival of around 15 lakh quintals of Red Gram”.
Basavaraj Ingin, President of the Karnataka Red Gram Growers Association, Siddaramappa Patil Dangapur, District President of the Krishik Samaj and Secretary, Karibasappa Patil and Janata Dal (S) District President, Basavaraj Tadkal said that the prices of Red Gram would fall further in the coming days as the harvesting of the crop was in full swing and the fresh stock arriving in the market would increase by manifolds in the coming days.
“Before the farmers start distress sale of their produce, the State government intervene and start procurement centres at all hobli and gram panchayat levels to purchase the produce directly from the farmers”.