MSP panel only after Assembly polls: Agriculture Minister

Election Commission told Government to put off committee, Narendra Singh Tomar tells Rajya Sabha.

Updated - February 04, 2022 09:51 pm IST

Published - February 04, 2022 01:53 pm IST - New Delhi

Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar speaks in the Rajya Sabha on February 4, 2022.

Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar speaks in the Rajya Sabha on February 4, 2022.

The committee on Minimum Support Prices, crop diversification and other issues promised to the farmers by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, will be set up only after the upcoming Assembly elections are over, Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar told the Rajya Sabha on Friday. In response to a question, the Minister said the Election Commission had not allowed the committee to be set up until then.

His statement comes after farm unions observed a Day of Betrayal earlier this week, slamming the government for failing to keep its promise, made in November, to set up the committee.

While announcing the repeal of three agrarian reform laws last November, Mr. Modi had promised to set up a committee to discuss the farm unions’ demand for a law guaranteeing the purchase of crops at MSP rates. The farmers’ agitation on the borders of Delhi was then suspended on the basis of a written commitment from the Agriculture Ministry that the committee would include representatives from the protesting unions.

“The government is committed to the announcement made by the PM. The issue is being considered by the Ministry,” said Mr. Tomar, responding to a Question Hour discussion following a query on the committee from Samajwadi Party MP Sukhram Singh Yadav.

He added that the government had written to the Election Commission for guidance in view of the upcoming polls in five states. “The Election Commission has given its response, saying that the committee should be formed after the elections are over,” said the Minister.

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