Badal criticises fertilizer price hike

Chandigarh, May 21 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal Friday slammed the central government for the recent hike in fertilizer prices, saying this would burden the farmers.

Badal said the prices of DAP (di-ammounim posphate) and urea have been increased per bag by Rs.30 and Rs.24 respectively.

He described the central government’s move as ‘a stab in the back of farmers’.

‘This hike speaks volumes of the Congress-led UPA government’s complete insensitivity and its apathetic attitude towards the plight of the beleaguered farmers who are already in distress due to low returns on their produce despite exorbitant cost of agricultural inputs incurred by them on diesel, fertilizers, pesticides etc.’

Punjab contributes substantially to the country’s food grain production.

Badal said the hike in the prices of DAP and urea has added to the

woes of the farmers, particularly at a time when the minimum support price (MSP) was not commensurate with the costs of agricultural inputs.

‘Instead of rewarding them with remunerative MSP, the centre has actually demoralised them by increasing the prices of DAP and urea, making agriculture a non-viable profession,’ he said.

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