M A I N   N E W S

Paddy MSP raised
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 10
The UPA government today announced across the board hike in the minimum support price (MSP) for grains, oilseeds, coarse cereals and pulses.

The decision to this effect was taken at a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCE), Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said.

A maximum hike of Rs 100 per quintal has been effected in the prices of groundnut, while the MSP for paddy has been increased by Rs 10 per quintal.

The CCE, which considered the hike in the kharif crop prices for 2004-05, decided to increase the paddy price to Rs 560 and Rs 590 for ordinary and Grade A categories respectively, the Finance Minister said.

The substantial hike in the MSP of oilseeds and pulses against a small increase for that of paddy was in line with the recommendations of the Commission on Agriculture and Prices (CACP), he said.

The CACP has recommended higher support prices for oilseeds and pulses, in which the country is deficient, to encourage crop diversification and break the wheat-rice cycle, particularly in the states of Punjab and Haryana, considered the food bowl of the country.

Mr Chidambaram said the MSP for groundnut had been increased by a massive Rs 100 a quintal to Rs 1,500 a quintal and that of yellow soyabean by Rs 70 to Rs 1,000 a quintal.

The black soyabean MSP had also been increased to Rs 900 a quintal from Rs 840 a quintal.

Sunflower seed support price has been hiked to Rs 1,340 a quintal from Rs 1,250 per quintal. Sesamum MSP is up by Rs 15 to Rs 1,500 a quintal.

Nigerseed MSP had been hiked to Rs 1,180, an increase of Rs 25 per quintal, the minister said.


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