Topic– Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices
4) Critically examine whether the MSP formula of 50 per cent over cost A2+FL is ill-advised?(250 words)
Why this question
The article evaluates the merit of focussing on MSP for improving the status of farmers, and highlights the issues involved therein. The article then discusses the overzealousness of states like Maharashtra in implementing norms wrt MSP and the challenges that it might create. The government has recently come out with the new MSP formula and thus issues related to MSP need to be prepared in detail.
Key demand of the question
The question expects us to highlight the pros and cons of the new MSP formula and examine the challenges, if any, posed by the decision of Maharashtra government to make procurement of wheat at MSP compulsory for traders. Finally, we need to provide our point of view and suggest alternatives to MSP for improving the status of farmers.
Critically examine – When you are asked to examine, you have to probe deeper into the topic, get into details, and find out the causes or implications if any . When ‘critically’ is suffixed or prefixed to a directive, all you need to do is look at the good and bad of something and give a fair judgement.
Structure of the answer
Introduction – Highlight the recent decision of the government with respect to fixing of MSP and the steps taken by states like Maharashtra etc to improve the status of their farmers by focussing on MSP.
- Highlight the pros and cons of focussing primarily on MSP for improving the economic status of farmers. Discuss whether fixing the MSP through new formula would ensure that the economic status of farmers improves.
- Examine whether the step taken by Maharashtra government in making procurement at MSP for wheat would ensure that farmers get fair price for their produce.
- Evaluate other alternatives to MSP for improving farmers welfare and economic condition
Conclusion – Give a fair and balanced view on the MSP formula and role of MSP and suggest way forward.