Critical Issues, Belated Responses?

After months that the nation has suffered from high inflation particularly in prices of essential vegetables such as onion and tomato, an economist, Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, discovers and suggests that ‘the horticulture items should all be removed from the ambit of the Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) Act to check volatile prices of fruit and vegetable and ensure farmers get the best prices for their produce’.

Even if we give credit for the idea for which he might expect a Padma Bibhusan if not Bharat Ratna, he very well knows he can’t get it implemented. Can the Prime Minister help his best assistant and supporter come out and get an ordinance issued in 24 hours? However, the same party could go out of the way for declaring emergency and many lesser evils such as declaring a president rule in Bihar. This government even after six years of ruling the country besides the party running it for the most of the six decades can still confuse the aam aadami by blaming NDA for every policy that is wrong, be it telecom or forward trading of essential commodities..

There is another great man rather Maratha running the agriculture who after all his years of running the government and cricket found out and suggested encouragement for the farmers around 50 kilometers of metros and now all towns of population more than 50,000 for growing vegetables. As usual, he is not responsible for anything, but remains the key figure because of compulsion of coalition.

But the funniest was a special report published in India Today on onion. The farmer of Nasik who takes his onion to the town mandi sells it to local traders at a price of Rs 43 a kg. I wish that is true. Will someone confirm what the farmer gets from the traders to whom they sell? As I guess the farmer would not have got anything more than Rs5-7 a kg from the trader.

Can the metros or for that matter all the towns create a farmers’ market places at nominal rental where the farmers can come and sell directly to the consumers?

Can the state government encourage the farmers along the highways and expressways the growing of vegetables and fruits that require fast transportation to the consumers?

Can the government encourage the use of high speed vehicles integrated with the world class technology for increasing self-life of the produce during transportation?

Can the government focus on R&D for improving the yield of the produce to reach the level achieved in the developed countries or China?

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