Committee Setup on Pulses MSP

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The Government has decided to set up a committee under the chief economic advisor to frame a long-term policy on pulses, which will look into various options, including MSP and bonus.

While increasing the size of the buffer stock of pulses to 20 lakh tonnes from the existing 8 lakh tonnes, the government decided to explore avenues for imports from more pulses-growing nations on a government-to-government basis.

current affairsThese decisions were taken at a meeting of a high-powered ministerial team headed by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley. Food Minister Ram Vilas Paswan and Urban Development Minister M Venkaiah Naidu were present.

The committee will re-examine the MSP and bonus being given to pulse growers at present and frame an appropriate policy to promote cultivation of lentils in India.

The government has already announced a sharp increase in MSP of kharif pulses for the 2016-17 crop year.

It is to be seen if the government would announce more incentives for pulses growers based on the panel’s report for the ongoing kharif season or consider it for the rabi season.

The Government has decided to increase the size of the pulse buffer stock to 20 lakh tonnes from the existing 8 lakh tonnes for this year.

Already, the Government has procured over 1.19 lakh tonnes of pulses like tur in the 2016—17 crop year (July—June), which is being given to state governments for retail distribution at a subsidised rate of Rs. 120 per kg.

To address domestic shortage through imports, the government has decided to talk to other pulse—growing countries like Canada for long—term import of lentils on a government—to—government basis.

India has already signed an agreement with African nation Mozambique for import of tur dal up to 2 lakh tonnes in next five years. It is negotiating with Myanmar.

According to government, the pulse prices will start cooling in the next 2—3 months as domestic production is estimated to be higher at 20 million tonnes this year, as against a little over 17 mt in 2015—16.

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