Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, MP & Former BJP President

Statement issued by Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu, MP & Former BJP President

The decision of the UPA government doubling the natural gas prices from $4.2 MBTU to $8.4 MBTU from 1st April, 2014 will lead to increase in power tariff and fertilizer costs and makes CNG transportation more expensive.  It is reported that power tariff will go up by Rs. 4.70 per unit for gas based plants and by almost 16 to 25 paise in other cases.  It will not be out of place to mention here that this government allowed pass-through mechanism for the power sector providing for passing on to the consumer through tariff hike any increase in cost due to import of coal.  The total cost of generation of power will go up to Rs. 6.40 per unit which in turn will substantially increase the cost of production of fertilizers.  This is totally anti-farmer and anti-people decision.

The increase in the Minimum Support Price (MSP) of paddy is bare minimum. Just an eye-wash. The mismatch between the MSP and the Cost of Production is glaring.  Costs of all agricultural inputs went up sharply.  The government seems to be playing ignorance to the farmers’ woes.  The State Government of Andhra Pradesh has recommended an MSP of Rs.2811 but the Union Government has fixed it at Rs.1310/-.  It is even less than 45% of what the State Government recommended.  The hiked MSP does not even cover the cost of production.  Moreover, the market price of paddy is around Rs.2235. How can then the MSP be so much lower than the market price?  This only shows the anti-farmer attitude of the UPA government.  According to agricultural experts, the cost of production of paddy per acre is Rs.37,103/- and, therefore, the MSP should be Rs.2811/- Swaminathan Committee recommended a profit of 46% on the cost of production per acre.

Prices of fertilizers have increased 12 times in 36 months.  Prices of fertilizers have gone up by 300%, farm power by 20%, lubricants by 62%, Diesel pumpsets by 44%.  For example, DAP prices have gone up from 517.40 to 1315, Complex fertilizers have risen from 472 to 1298. It shows the anti-people mindset of the government.

The mandate of the UPA-II is only upto 2014.  How can this out-going government enhance the prices of LPG for coming three years?  Who gave them the authority to do so?  Even while going also, this government is continuing with its anti-people and anti-farmer polices.  The BJP will oppose this decision tooth and nail and dare the government not to even think of it.  People are waiting with vengeance to throw this government out at the earliest opportunity.  This kind of anti-people decisions will only fuel their anger and unseat this insensitive government at the Centre.

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