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Double farmers’ income by 2022: Shekhawat tells NE States

GUWAHATI, May 28: Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Monday asked the North Eastern States to working hard to double farmers’ income by 2022.

Shekhawat’s instruction to NE States came during an official meeting to review the status of execution of various agriculture projects in the region. The meeting was held at a five star hotel in the city on Monday with Shekhawat in the chair.

“The government over the last three years has been working to minimize the cost incurred by farmers and ensure they get a fair price for their crops,” he said.

On other hand while addressing a press conference after the review meeting on Monday Shekhawat said farmers across the country are under pressure, one of the reasons being they are not getting the right prices for their produce.

The Indian agriculture sector has a very complex structure and one of the reasons for the pressure on farmers is due to not getting right prices, he said.

“If we want to double the income of anyone, be it an individual or a family or the country or any community, two things can be done — reduce the expenditure and increase the sources of revenue… The government is working with this two-pronged approach to increase the income of the farmers,” Shekhawat said.

Explaining hurdles in providing fair prices to the farmers, the Union Minister said India is a big example in the world having a huge gap between the prices of farm gate and consumer prices, due to many levels of middlemen in between.

“To eliminate them, we have developed the e-NAM platform. This has increased competitiveness and ensured right prices also,” Shekhawat said. As a next step, the government will connect 22,000 small ‘Gramin Haats’ with this system by 2020, he said.