KOCHI: Senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy today urged the Centre to give more stress to agriculture sector in the upcoming union budget.
Participating in a pre-budget analysis session held at the Indian Institute of Management Kozhikode (IIM-K)'s Kochi Campus, Swamy said farmers should be empowered to export their produce through Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ambitious 'Make in India' programme.
"I am totally in support of Make in India. It is a good idea. What is important is the process of Make in India. I think one of the things, we have to do is somehow promote agricultural system...Start empowering the farmers to export," he said.
Suggesting reforms to accelerate export of agriculture produce, he said all "our agriculture products are cheap" and they could match the quality of the farm products of developed world including Japan and European countries.
"The rice produced in India and the rice produced in same quality in Japan is seven times more expensive," he said, adding, milk and vegetables produced in India are also "less expensive" than any other parts of the world.
Swamy said the government has been taking many positive steps for the Indian economy, since the last two years.
"I hope that the Union Budget 2016 is growth-oriented and proves its commitment to the Indian middle-class by taking steps to alleviate their concerns," he said.
He attributed much of the stress in financial institutions to loans advanced to large companies.
"This budget should focus on measures to improve access of funds by Small and Medium Enterprises," he said.
Swamy also suggested an enhancement of investments as well as measures to curb corruption.