Special Correspondent

`Lopsided development making agriculture a loss-making proposition'

LUCKNOW: Jan Morcha convener and former Prime Minister V.P. Singh on Saturday demanded the constitution of a National Security Council for the rehabilitation of displaced farmers and tribals.

Stating that a serious agrarian crisis along with a human and economic crisis loomed, Mr. Singh expressed concern at the acquisition of farmland and displacement of tribals from their natural surroundings by corporate investors.

Meeting the press at the Uttar Pradesh Press Club at the conclusion of the first phase of the Jan Morcha's Mukti Sangram Yatra, the former Prime Minister said the recent developments in the farm sector were fraught with dangerous consequences.

Mr. Singh slammed the "lopsided development model," and said agriculture was becoming a loss-making enterprise.

He said though the sensex was rising and the GDP had increased, suicides by debt-ridden farmers continued. This was a clear sign that the fruits of development had not reached the grass roots.

A proper development model, incorporating the needs of all sections, was the need of the hour.

He warned the United Progressive Alliance and the Mulayam Singh Yadav Governments that the undue emphasis on SEZs and hi-tech cities would prove counter-productive as the hunger and debt-ridden farmers had the potential to wipe out the development model that favoured the corporate sector.