Rabi sowing ops not affected due to demonetisation: Govt

22.11.2016

Sowing of rabi crops like wheat, pulses and oilseeds has not been affected due to banning of old Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh today said, ruing that politics is being played in the name of farmers.

"The decision to ban Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes was taken to curb blackmoney and corruption. This is going to directly benefit farmers and poor people. This decision is being opposed saying it is affecting farmers and would impact rabi sowing. But the truth is the move is being opposed for personal interest," Singh said in a statement.

Stating that some people are playing politics in the name of farmers, the minister said sowing area of wheat, pulses and oilseeds has been higher till November 18 of this rabi season compared with the year-ago period.

Wheat has been sown in 79.40 lakh hectares till November 18 of this ongoing rabi season, higher than 78.83 lakh hectares in the year-ago period, he said.

Similarly, area sown to pulses has increased to 74.55 lakh hectares from 69.98 lakh hectares while oilseeds acreage has gone up to 56.16 lakh hectares from 48.74 lakh hectares in the said period.

Wheat, pulses and oilseeds are main rabi crops. Sowing started from October and harvesting will begin from April.

Without naming any political leaders from West Bengal and Uttar Pradesh, the Union agriculture minister said the sowing area is higher in these two states as well.

In West Bengal, rabi crops have been sown in 2.39 lakh hectares till November 18 of this rabi season, as against 2.25 lakh hectares in the year-ago period.

In Uttar Pradesh, rabi crops have been sown in 33.79 lakh hectares, much higher than 25.91 lakh hectares a year ago.

UP farmers have sown wheat in 14.82 lakh hectares till November 18 of this rabi season, as against 14.38 lakh hectare a year earlier.

Pulse acreage has increased to 8.52 lakh hectares from 2.68 lakh hectares while oilseeds area has gone up to 10.08 lakh hectares from 8.63 lakh hectares in the said period in Uttar Pradesh, he said.

Highlighting various steps taken to ease cash flow to farmers, the minister said farmers are allowed to buy seeds with old Rs 500 notes at government outlets as well as from agri varsities.

Farmers have also been allowed to withdraw up to Rs 25,000 from banks and the steps are being taken to open bank accounts of farmers at mandis, he said, adding that farmers can avail of funds via kisan credit cards.


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