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Implement MSP, not farm laws, agriculture experts ask Centre – The Tribune

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Updated At: Oct 29, 2021 09:03 AM (IST)
Farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal addresses a gathering at Punjabi University in Patiala on Thursday. Rajesh Sachar


Tribune News Service
Patiala, October 28
Experts during a discussion on three farm laws at Punjabi University on Thursday said, “The government needs to work toward implementing MSP, increasing government procurement mandis and establishing co-operative societies for agriculture.” They said reformations similar to those being brought about in India (farm laws) were implemented in the USA and Canada but these led to negative effects for farmers there.
Agriculture expert Devinder Sharma, farmer leaders Balbir singh Rajewal, Joginder Singh Ugrahan, Dr Sucha Singh Gill, former professor, Centre for Research in Rural and Industrial Development (CRRID), were part of the event among others.
University Vice-Chancellor Professor Arvind said, “The university will study and publish a book on the history of peasants. Punjabi University is the first university to have directly associated itself with the farmers’ protest.”
Agriculture expert Devinder Sharma said the agriculture had been deliberately impoverished wherein people had been pushed from rural areas to urban areas. Citing establishment of ITIs on a large scale in the country, he said, “The ITIs were established in India a year after the World Bank directed for youngsters to be taught industrial labour. Our economic design is aimed at pushing us out of agriculture.”
Dr Sucha Singh Gill said, “The farm laws are neither in favour of farmers, nor the consumers. There are a number of co-operative models, including the agro-processing and marketing model that can be implemented. We need to think about the farming sector from the community angle.”
Harish Chauhan, president of the Fruit Vegetable and Flower Association, Himachal Pradesh, said, “The MSP should be implemented on all crops. The apple growers of Himachal Pradesh are suffering because of private procurement of crops in the state. In the beginning, the private companies offered us high rates, but after the farmers became dependent on them, the offered rates were reduced. We want MSP to be implemented on all crops.”
Farmer leader Balbir Singh Rajewal said the people’s representatives need to be made answerable to the public.
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The Tribune, now published from Chandigarh, started publication on February 2, 1881, in Lahore (now in Pakistan). It was started by Sardar Dyal Singh Majithia, a public-spirited philanthropist, and is run by a trust comprising four eminent persons as trustees.
The Tribune, the largest selling English daily in North India, publishes news and views without any bias or prejudice of any kind. Restraint and moderation, rather than agitational language and partisanship, are the hallmarks of the paper. It is an independent newspaper in the real sense of the term.
The Tribune has two sister publications, Punjabi Tribune (in Punjabi) and Dainik Tribune (in Hindi).
Remembering Sardar Dyal Singh Majithia
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