Telangana government has urged the centre to increase the minimum support price (MSP) of cotton to Rs 5,000 per quintal in view of protests by cotton farmers in the region. The MSP of cotton has been fixed by the union government at Rs 3,936 to Rs 4,100 per quintal with the exact amount to be decided based on the moisture content in the crop at the time of procurement.
However, farmers in the state complained that authorities at the Cotton Corporation of India (CCI) procurement centres were not willing to buy cotton with more than 12 per cent of moisture even at the centre-approved MSP of Rs 3,936 per quintal.
Harish Rao, Telangana minister for market and irrigation met Sanjay Kumar Panda, textile secretary in New Delhi last week to discuss the issues faced by farmers and urged him to increase the MSP of cotton to Rs 5,000 per quintal and raise the acceptable moisture per cent from 12 to 20.
In a statement, Rao said that the production of the kharif crop was high this year in Telangana. He said CCI had opened only 45 out of 84 assured procurement centres this season.
The minister also said so far the CCI has purchased only 15,000 quintals, a sharp fall in comparison to 1,00,000 quintals purchased in November last year. He urged CCI officials to purchase cotton five days instead of three days in a week at present.