BHUBANESWAR: Amidst farmers protest over three newly enacted farm laws and opposition lending support to the agitation, Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Sunday said myths are being spread about the new legislation by forces opposed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Releasing a booklet titled ‘Annadatanka Prati Samarpita Modi Sarkar’, an Odia translation of ‘Putting Farmers First’, an e-booklet issued by the Centre highlighting reforms in agriculture sector, at the State BJP headquarters here, Pradhan said the Modi government is firmly committed for empowerment of farmers by doubling their income.
The Union Minister said political parties opposed to the BJP are instilling fear in the minds of farmers by misleading them that the minimum support price (MSP) will go away, Agriculture Produce Marketing Committee (APMC) mandis will be closed and their land will be taken away by corporate houses.
He said the booklet has made clear the truth about farm reforms and in what way the reforms will benefit the farmers. Dubbing the Congress and its allies opportunistic, Pradhan said the reforms started during the UPA government when Sharad Pawar was the Union Agriculture Minister.
In his August 2010 letter to chief Ministers of all states, he had explained the need of amending the APMC Act to encourage private sectors in providing alternative marketing channels. Now, Pawar has changed his stand, said Pradhan. The booklet also contains the letter of Pawar to two Chief Ministers, one to then Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dixit and Madhay Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
Pradhan said the booklet has lot of graphics explaining how the recent agro-reforms will help the farmers. He urged party workers to read and share it widely. Take care that the booklet is distributed among all the MLAs including Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik, intellectuals, senior journalists, leaders of farmers organisations, he added.