New Delhi, July 31 (IANS) Scores of dairy farmers demonstrated here on Tuesday and spilled milk on the road, demanding subsidy in exports and fixed minimum price of their produce from Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Gathered under the banner of All India Progressive Dairy Farmers Association (AIPDFA), they threatened of a nation-wide agitation if their demands were not met within 15 days and submitted a list of their demands to the Prime Minister.
“Modi government promised to double the agriculture income by 2022 and the Central government announced hike in the MSPs for various crops, but it completely ignored the dairy farmers who contribute 26 per cent in total agriculture GDP of the country.
“Many agriculture farmers have adopted dairy farming as a side business to compensate losses in the crops, while many others are totally dependent on dairy farming. Dairy farming is a cash business which runs the kitchens of rural families on a daily basis,” AIPDFA President S. Daljit Singh Sadarpur said at the protest.
Farmers are demanding a fixed price of Rs 30 for cow milk and Rs 50 for buffalo milk, apart from 50 per cent export subsidy in place of 10 per cent, which the government has on offer now.
Talking to IANS, Sadarpur stressed that dairy farmers are in a bad shape partly because of stocking of three lakh metric tonne condensed milk for export in various warehouses of the country, which could not be exported because of slump in international prices.
“We have demanded an export subsidy of 50 per cent from the government, but it has offered us only 10 per cent. Only three months are left before the off season starts, no one will buy our milk for even Rs 20. Situation will become very bad then for farmers across the country,” Sadarpur said.
Farmers have also demanded exemption from GST on all milk products and zero import duty on farm machinery and tools.