Naveen forms inter-ministerial panel to look into farmers’ demands

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Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Monday constituted an inter-ministerial committee under the chairmanship of Finance Minister Shashi Bhusan Behera to prepare terms of reference to discuss the demands of farmers.

Agriculture and Panchayati Raj Minister and Cooperation Minister are the members.

“Odisha government stands committed to the cause of the farmers’ welfare. Our government has consistently been proactive for the cause of the farmers and development of agriculture in the state,” the finance minister said.

He said that Odisha is one of the first states to have an exclusive budget for agriculture and farmers empowerment. The state government is providing loans at one percent interest for farmers and our irrigation budget has had the maximum growth in the last 10 years,” he added.

Behera further stated that the Odisha government has been strongly pursuing the implementation of the MS Swaminathan Committee report with the union government. “In fact, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has personally taken up this issue with the Union Government,” he stated.

“In case of minimum support price, our state government has been proactively pursuing that one and half times the cost of production should be given as minimum support price. In this regard, our State Assembly has unanimously passed a resolution and we have also formed the House Committee to pursue this with the government of India,” he added.

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