Coronavirus lockdown: ICC suggests measures for agriculture sector

ST CORRESPONDENT
Friday, 3 April 2020

The Indian Chambers of Commerce (ICC) has suggested measures for the agriculture sector during the lockdown to the government.

Pune: The Indian Chambers of Commerce (ICC) has suggested measures for the agriculture sector during the lockdown to the government.

The ICC has issued a press statement suggesting measures for harvesting and storing rabi crops. 

The national lockdown has led to market closures and lack of transportation, which has been affecting farmers. Therefore, ICC has recommended setting up of a taskforce to implement the APMC Act under government supervision for regulated trade so that essential commodities are supplied at the right time and at the right price. Thus hoarding and food inflation can be avoided.

In the context of the forthcoming Kharif crop, farmers will very critically require all the farm inputs timely. The ICC has suggested that all states should classify all Agri inputs such as seeds, micro-irrigation, farm equipment (tractors, combined harvester, etc.), fertilisers and crop protection chemicals as exempt from the lockdown for manufacturing and transportation of essential food crops.

The ICC also recommended that the central and state governments should also keep Agri inputs and seeds in essential category to ensure food security. Warehouses storing Agri inputs and agriculture products should be given a green sticker for identification. They should be allowed to operate without any hindrance. Any restriction may affect the availability of Agri inputs and seeds particularly. The sector should be encouraged to take all precautions, to prevent any spread of COVID-19 infections.

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