Chandigarh, June 14 – President, Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee, Kumari Selja today visited the residence of MLA Gopal Kanda in Sirsa to mourn the death of his mother. She prayed to Almighty to grant peace to the departed soul and consoled the bereaved family members.
Later, Kumari Selja also addressed a press conference in Sirsa, in which she raised several issues.
Kumari Selja said that this year the union government I had raised the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of paddy from Rs 1815 per quintal to Rs 1868 per quintal, which was only an increase of Rs 53 per quintal. That is, the government had increased the MSP by only 2.89 percent. This was lower than last year’s increase of 3.7 percent. There was never such a low annual increase in the last five years. This increase was more than half of this year’s inflation rate of 6 percent. It means that the value of paddy had not increased, but decreased. The government had done the same in case of other crops as well, she added.
The MSP for cotton had been increased by only 4.95 percent per quintal. Besides, the MSP for other crops had also been increased marginally. For most of the crops for which the government had declared MSP, this year’s increase was much lower than the previous year. The annual increase in MSP for paddy, jowar, groundnut, sunflower, soybean crops had been the lowest in the last 5 years.
This year, the cost of paddy to farmers was about Rs 1700 per quintal, according to which the government price should have been at least Rs 2500. At the same time, most farmers have to sell their crops at prices much lower than the MSP.
Kumari Selja said that the BJP government, which claimed that it would implement the Swaminathan report before the elections, each year the farmers have been facing an incremental crisis due to non-payment of the prices of the crops. According to the MSP announced by the BJP government, farmers will face losses of Rs 632.50 per quintal on paddy, Rs 1887.50 per quintal on cotton, Rs 969.50 per quintal on jowar, Rs 2196 per quintal on arhar, Rs 2237.50 per quintal on moong, Rs 2355 per quintal on urad and other crops as well.
Kumari Selja said that when the Congress government was in power at the Center from 2004 to 2009, the MSP of paddy was increased by 61 percent and by 38 percent in the second term of the Congress government from 2009 to 2014 whereas the MSP of paddy was increased by only 29 percent in the first term of the BJP government in the Center. Along with this, the MSP of cotton was increased by 42 percent in the first term of the Congress government from 2004 to 2009, by 48 percent in the second term of the Congress government from 2009 to 2014 whereas it had been increased by only 37 percent during the BJP rule. On the other hand, in the case of other crops as well, there had been a very small increase in the BJP tenure as compared to the Congress tenure. At the same time, farmers have been ignored while fixing the MSP this time, she added.
The figures were clear that when the Congress government was in power in the center, the farmers of the country were happy and there was a tremendous increase in the MSP of crops, whereas the farmers were being betrayed during the BJP government rule.
Kumari Selja said that the appointment of 17,000 Kisan Mitras by the Haryana government was only a show-off. Farmers were being betrayed by the government in the state. The money scam in the state, then the problems for the farmers in this epidemic, the frauds going on with them (like the irregularities in weighing of grams), the lack of proper MSP for their crops and the anti-farmer decisions of the government were major examples.
Speaking on the arrest of the son of the Ambala BJP District President on charges of smuggling heroin in Ambala, Kumari Selja said that the culprits, in this case, should get strict punishment. Earlier also this young man was arrested in the heroin smuggling case. Our state was already getting caught in a swamp of drugs. Recently, the liquor scam had been caught in the state, which also involved people from the ruling party. If only people in power indulge in the drug trade, then the situation in the state can become more serious. She said that Chief Minister Manohar Lal should take strict cognizance in this matter and order strict action.
Kumari Selja also expressed concern about the increasing cases of corona in the state. She said that the situation in the state was getting worse day by day. On April 12, there were 181 cases of corona in the state, which increased to 780 on May 12 and now by June 13, the number had reached 6749. She said that the rate of recovery in the state was also continuously decreasing. In the last few days, there had been a tremendous increase in corona cases. There were also reports of continuous decline in the health system from all across the state. She said that the government of Haryana will have to work at the grassroots level to fix the health system at the earliest and to meet the challenges.
Regarding 1983 PTI teachers in the state, whose recruitment had been canceled by the Supreme Court, Kumari Selja said that the Haryana government should within legal parameters try to provide relief to these teachers by adopting positive measures.