Capital-intensive markets influencing agriculture: BJKM
Capital-Intensive Markets Influencing Agriculture: BJKM. He said that while the farmers get very low prices for the farm produce during harvest, the same farmers find exorbitant prices for seeds in the market.
‘Farmer is a wholesaler while selling farm produce and consumer while buying seeds’
Hyderabad: On a day when the World Agricultural Forum Congress-2013 was being conducted at Hitex, agricultural scientists, political leaders, professors, members of farmers’ organisations and the farmers themselves held a counter seminar at Hotel Siddhartha, Abids, literally tearing apart the UPA government’s tall claims of being farmer-friendly.
Bharatiya Janata Kisan Morcha (BJKM) organised a day-long seminar on ‘emerging challenges of small farm holder agriculture- policy and technology perspective’ on Tuesday, where several speakers voiced their displeasure about the pro-multinational and anti-farmer policies of the government.
Om Prakash Dhankar, national president, BJKM, said that the Central government had failed miserably in keeping up with the latest agriculture methods. The Centre’s policies are benefiting the seeds, fertilizers and pesticide manufacturing companies outside India. “Earlier, farmers used domestic seeds.
But now, hybrid seeds manufactured by multinational companies have come in their place. And these companies are dictating terms in the Indian markets,” he said. He said that the agriculture inputs like seeds, fertilisers and even labour, ‘which were localized before 1960, had become capital intensive post-green revolution and these inputs were being driven by markets and thus cheating the farmers’.
He said that while the farmers get very low prices for the farm produce during harvest, the same farmers find exorbitant prices for seeds in the market.
“The farmer becomes a wholesaler when he sells his produce, but becomes a consumer in a retail market when he goes to buy seeds and profit doesn’t figure anywhere favouring the farmer,” he said.
He alleged that by opening doors to FDI, India allowed the foreign manufacturers to control the domestic market. Due to the powerful lobbying of foreign manufacturers, The 2004 Seeds Bill and The2008 Pesticides Management Bill got stuck in the parliament.He said that the only way to put a check on the MNCs was for the farmers to form cooperative groups like ‘Amul’ in Gujarat and operate successfully.