‘We need to protect food self-sufficiency, price support to farmers’

Agricultural economists advocated protection of the country’s food self-sufficiency and a system of price support for farmers.

Addressing a conference on the topic “National Agricultural Policy in Changing Global Relations and Climate” here on Tuesday, economist Prabhat Panik cited the example of some African countries in which food self-sufficiency has been abandoned.

Once this happens, PDS maintenance becomes difficult. In India, Narendra Modi’s government has tried to abandon the food grain subsidy system.

This would have caused the peasants to move away from growing food grains towards growing cash crops that seemed immediately profitable until their prices collapsed. This, in turn, will undermine the country’s food self-sufficiency. It would also have made PDS maintenance impossible. But the massive resistance of the farmers prevented this from happening.

The 5th Aripandi Laxminarayana Memorial Lecture was organized by Telangana Rithu Sangam and the Aripandi Foundation.

There is no payment policy

Agricultural economist Aldas Janaya (Professor Jaishankar Telangana State Agricultural University) said that there was no major political push for the agricultural sector after 1990. “The state made good political interventions during the first 30-40 years after independence and helped the country to achieve food self-sufficiency. But After that there was no major political push in this sector.

“We have a large surplus in food production but there is no strategy to make use of it. We are exporting rice but due to lack of prior planning we are not able to earn good returns.

He stated that the country cannot afford to compromise on food self-sufficiency, and said that food security is part of national sovereignty.