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Prime Minister Narendra Modi also quoted his predecessor Manmohan Singh on the need to remove hurdles in farmers selling produce freely.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday appealed to farmers sitting at Delhi borders to end their protest and join the Centre for discussions on the three farm laws.
Reiterating the government’s stand on minimum support price, PM Modi said: “MSP tha, MSP hai aur MSP rahega (MSP was there, MSP is there, MSP will continue). Affordable ration for the poor will continue. Mandis will be modernised.”
Questioning opposition parties for their “U-turn” on agriculture reforms, the Prime Minister also quoted his predecessor Manmohan Singh on the need for reforms in the farm sector.
“Manmohan ji is here, I will read out his quote. Those taking a U-Turn (on farm laws) will perhaps agree with him. ‘There are other rigidities because of marketing regime set up in 1930s which prevent our farmers from selling their produce where they get highest rate of return. It is our intention to remove all those handicaps which come in the way of India realising its vast potential at one large common market,’” PM Modi said in Rajya Sabha.
“You should be proud that Modi is implementing Manmohan Singh’s dream,” he added.
He also said that former agriculture minister Sharad Pawar and previous Congress governments have supported and implemented agricultural reforms in some form or the other.
“Sharad Pawar ji, and those from Congress, everyone… all governments have stood for agricultural reforms. Whether they were able to do it or not, but everyone has advocated that it should be done,” PM Modi said.
The Prime Minister also spoke about NDA’s schemes that have helped farmers. Citing the PMGSY as an example and said, “When the road connectivity improves, it enables the produce of the farmers to reach distant places. There are efforts like Kisan Rail too. The need of the hour is to improve the lives of the small farmers.”