DAINIK NATION BUREAU
Voicing concerns over the difficulties being faced by the farmers even after 70 years of Independence and the country making strides in various fields, The Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu Naidu said “A doctor wants his son to become a doctor, a lawyer’s son becomes a lawyer, an actor wants his son to become an actor despite not being fully qualified, but a farmer prays for his son becoming at least a Class-IV employee. There is a need to make farming a remunerative activity and assured incomes to farmers through necessary interventions”.
Naidu was addressing the farmers who came to facilitate him on ‘a farmer becoming the Vice-President’ and dwelt at length about the problems adversely impacting farm incomes including the paradox of high input prices and non-remunerative prices for farm produce, inadequate institutional financing, lack of cold storage and transport facilities, shortage of irrigation and power supply, poor marketing systems, inadequate penetration of modern farm technology, inadequate public investments etc.
Naidu referred to his visiting Madanapalle market in Andhra Pradesh where tomato was sold at Rs One per kg and the same day in Bengaluru at Rs.8/kg and the next day in Delhi at Rs.20/kg, which reflect poorly on farmer being deprived of his due. He urged the farmers to take advantage of the e-NAM (National Agricultural Market).
Referring to Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s call for doubling farmers’ incomes by 2022, he urged the State governments to ensure necessary infrastructure like good road connectivity, irrigation water, electricity, network of cold storage facilities, problem oriented farm research and extension services, marketing support to farmers etc.
Noting that States have to play a critical role in assuring remunerative returns to farmers, Naidu referred to the success of focussed efforts of the Madhya Pradesh Government that led to a 22% growth in farm output in the State.
Parliament, Political Parties and the Press need take farming sector challenges more seriously enable workable solutions. Being Chairman of Rajya Sabha he will sincerely endeavour to ensure that farmers’ problems get due attention of the House.