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Farmer deaths were an old problem and the Narendra Modi government had taken many steps to alleviate the difficulties of the farmers, said Union commerce and industry minister Suresh Prabhu on Sunday. Addressing a press conference at the state BJP headquarters here, Prabhu said the Modi government had taken several farmer-friendly measures, including increasing the minimum support price for their produce, giving them relief from agricultural debt and announcing a crop-insurance scheme.
“The occurrence of farmer deaths is a fact, but one must understand that it is an old problem persisting for years. However, the future of farmers under Modi’s rule is going to be better. Has any government in India ever guaranteed farmers 150 per cent of the price of their produce? This is not only a plan but has been approved by the cabinet. Farmers will get more than their expectation,” said Prabhu.
Reacting to statements of Trinamool Congress (TMC) leaders about the well being of the farmers in Bengal, Prabhu said the farmers across the country were reaping benefits of welfare schemes implemented by the Modi government.
“People are free to say anything. What I am saying is based on reports. Not only in Bengal but the BJP government has been taking several steps across the country for the welfare of farmers,” Prabhu added.
He further said that people would want to have Modi back as Prime Minister as “he has done much more for the farmers in his four years as prime minister than what was done for them in the last 70 years”.
When asked if the BJP was sending more ministers in the state keeping in mind next year’s general elections, Prabhu said the state unit of the saffron party was quite strong and did not require any extra fillip. “It is only because the Centre gives Bengal its due importance that many Union ministers are visiting the state, unlike during the (days of the) previous governments when hardly anyone came,” he said.