In a significant move ahead of assembly polls in crucial wheat-growing states, the Union government has announced a substantial increase in the Minimum Support Price (MSP) for wheat. The Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs, presided over by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has approved a hike of Rs 150 per quintal, raising the MSP for wheat to Rs 2,275 for the 2024-25 marketing season. This marks the highest quantum of increase in MSP for any marketing season since the Modi government came into power in 2014.
The current MSP for wheat stands at Rs 2,125 per quintal for the ongoing 2023-24 marketing season, which runs from April to March. Wheat, a vital winter crop in India, undergoes sowing between October and harvest begins in April.
Besides the increase in wheat MSP, the government has also increased the MSP for several other crops. For the 2024-25 marketing season, the MSP for barley has been raised by Rs 115 to Rs 1,850 per quintal, up from the previous year’s Rs 1,735 per quintal.
Among rabi pulses, the MSP for gram has been raised by Rs 105 to Rs 5,440 per quintal for 2024-25, compared to the previous season’s Rs 5,335 per quintal. Likewise, the MSP for lentil (masur) has seen a significant increase, with a jump of Rs 425 to Rs 6,425 per quintal from Rs 6,000 per quintal.
To encourage oilseeds cultivation, the government has also increased the MSP for rapeseed-mustard seed by Rs 200 to Rs 5,650 per quintal for the 2024-25 marketing season, up from Rs 5,450 per quintal in the 2023-24 season. Similarly, the MSP for safflower has been hiked by Rs 150 to Rs 5,800 per quintal for 2024-25, up from Rs 5,650 per quintal.
Minimum Support Price (MSP) is a crucial government policy that ensures farmers receive a guaranteed minimum price for their crops when sold to government procurement agencies. It serves as a safety net for farmers, guaranteeing them a fair price for their produce.
The decision to increase the MSP was made at a Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Speaking to the media following the meeting, Information & Broadcasting Minister Anurag Singh Thakur stated that the CCEA had approved the MSP increases for six mandated rabi crops for the 2024-25 marketing season. Thakur emphasized that these decisions were made based on the recommendations of the Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices (CACP).
The increase in MSP for wheat and other crops is seen as a vital step to support farmers and promote agricultural growth, especially in the face of upcoming elections in key wheat-growing states. This move is expected to bolster the agricultural sector and provide greater income security for Indian farmers.