Centre awaiting EC’s nod to set up MSP panel owing to Assembly elections


The Union government has said the process of setting up a committee for providing a legal guarantee of Minimum Support Price (MSP) for agricultural crops is under process, but it has been held up in getting the Election Commission’s approval for its formation.

In a reply in the Rajya Sabha on Friday, Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, said: “At present, in view of the Assembly elections in some States, the process of concurrence of the Election Commission for the formation of committee is under progress.”

As per the changing requirements of the country to change the cropping pattern, to make MSP more effective and transparent, and to encourage natural farming method of agriculture, the process of setting up a committee is under process, he said.

He was responding to a question on the formation of the committee on MSP that was promised before farmers, who had staged protests in the National Capital Region of Delhi before withdrawing their agitation. It was among the assurances given by the Centre. On their part, the farmers had observed January 31 as “betrayal day” in protest against the delay in the formation of the committee.

Swaminathan panel

In a separate reply, Tomar said the government has taken action on 200 points of the MS Swaminathan committee report.

Stating that the government had approved the draft of “National Policy for Farmers” on the basis of recommendations of the National Commission for Farmers, chaired by Swaminathan, he said an Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) recommended 201 action points to be implemented by the government.

“Out of these, the government has taken action on 200 action points. Remaining one action point is related to setting up of Model Genome Club in each State with the help of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana,” the minister said.


To a query on the integration of mandis (agricultural markets) into the e-NAM (Electronic National Agriculture Market) platform, Tomar said 1,000 mandis in 401 districts across 18 States and three UTs have been integrated with the e-NAM platform as on December 31. He said the 415 new mandis have been integrated into the e-NAM platform since March 31, 2018.

Natural farming

On natural farming, the minister said an area of 4.09 lakh hectares has been covered under natural farming until now. In this regard, ₹49.80 crore has been released to eight States

The government is promoting natural farming through Bhartiya Prakritik Krishi Padhati (BPKP) introduced during 2020-21 as a sub-scheme of Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) for the promotion of traditional indigenous practices, including natural farming. The scheme mainly emphasises on exclusion of all synthetic chemical inputs and promotes on-farm biomass recycling with major stress on biomass mulching, and use of cow dung-urine formulations and other plant-based preparations.

On the plans to include natural farming in agricultural education curriculum, Tomar said ICAR (Indian Council of Agriculture Research) has constituted a committee for developing syllabus and curricula of natural farming at undergraduate and postgraduate level.

Published on

February 04, 2022


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