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Union Budget 2021: Budget sends mixed signals on farm sector -Priscilla Jebaraj

-The Hindu Farmer advocates not impressed by on-ground impact of budget announcements The Union Budget sent mixed signals to the tens of thousands of farmers who have been protesting on Delhi’s borders for the last two months, and the wider agricultural community. On the one hand, the budget allocation for the Department of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmers Welfare was slashed 8.5% in 2021-22. The flagship PM-KISAN scheme, meant to provide income support to...

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Imbalances in India’s cereal economy need more than a short-term fix -Jean Dreze

-The Indian Express The need of the hour is to expand distribution under the PDS. Failing that, the country is heading towards another round of wasteful stock accumulation even as poor people struggle to feed their families. The paradox of “hunger amidst plenty” has haunted India for a long time and shows no sign of going away. On the contrary, it reached a new plane in 2020. On the one hand, the...

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Explained: The cost of guaranteed MSP -Harish Damodaran

-The Indian Express Apart from repeal of farm laws, farmers are demanding guaranteed Minimum Support Prices, which have no legal backing. A look at what the implications would be if the govt did provide the guarantee Farmer unions protesting on Delhi’s borders are raising two fundamental demands. The first is for repealing the three agricultural reform laws enacted by the Centre. The second is to provide legal guarantee for the minimum support...

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Farmers’ protest-- In a thaw, Centre offers to put off farm laws for 18 months -Priscilla Jebaraj

-The Hindu Unions to study proposal, return for talks on January 22. Farm union leaders will consider a proposal from the Central government to suspend the implementation of three contentious farm laws for the next one and a half years while a committee is formed to look into their demands. Union leaders said the Centre had also offered to submit an affidavit to the Supreme Court to this effect. They will discuss the...

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Separating the wheat from the agri-policy chaff -Biswajit Dhar

-The Hindu In the farm laws debate, the focus should be on the exchequer-farm subsidies issue and the spending on farm subsidies In the on-going debates around the three new pieces of agricultural legislation and the farmers’ demand for continuation of Minimum Support Prices (MSP), questions have often been raised whether the government should be using the taxpayers’ money to provide subsidies to the farming community in this country. However, logically, two...

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