ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Farm Laws

The Way Ahead

This article analyses the issue of extending minimum support price coverage to major food crops. Given the utility of public procurement and buffer stocks during the previous crises, MSP procurement may be continued for rice and wheat but a shift to direct payments is needed for non-staple crops.

There were mainly three concerns voiced by the farmers during their prolonged protest over a year, which ultimately led to the repeal of the farm laws that were enacted in 2020. These concerns mainly related to (i) continuance of the minimum support price (MSP)—procurement system, (ii) legali­sing MSP, and (iii) vulnerability of small and ­marginal farmers vis-à-vis the large ­private players.

All these three issues are interlinked. Anxiety among the farmers, mainly of Punjab and Haryana, over the continuance of the MSP and procurement has led to the demand for legalising the MSP. This ­demand is also rooted in the third concern of providing some form of insurance to small and marginal farmers who are more vulnerable vis-à-vis the private buyers. We will attempt to analyse each of these issues, assess the implications, and identify the alternatives, if any.

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Updated On : 16th Aug, 2022
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