Hyderabad: Telugu Desam Party on Wednesday requested the Andhra Pradesh government to prevail upon the Centre to get the ban on cotton exports lifted immediately for boosting price of the commodity in the market.
    
"The Government of India has fixed Rs 3,900 as Minimum Support Price for a quintal of cotton. But it is not being purchased for more than Rs 2,500 a quintal," TDP president N Chandrababu Naidu said.
    
In a letter to the Chief Minister, the Leader of Opposition noted that cotton commanded a price of Rs 6,000 per quintal two years ago, which has now fallen drastically due to the ban on exports.
    
"Cotton is the largest crop in the state after paddy. The cost of cultivation touched Rs 3,900 this year due to increase in input prices. Farmers are, however, unable to get even the cost price, as middlemen were ruling the roost in the market yards," he said.
    
Though the Cotton Corporation of India was supposed to open 76 purchase centres in AP, both the state and the Central governments have failed to get even one centre started.
    
As a result, middlemen were exploiting the situation and depriving farmers of the Minimum Support Price, he said.
    
"Cotton growers in Adilabad, Warangal, Khammam, Guntur and Prakasam districts are agitating because they are not getting a remunerative price on their produce. As per the Swaminathan Committee recommendations, at least Rs 6,000 per quintal should be paid to farmers," the former Chief Minister said in the letter.
    
"The state government should get cotton procured at that price by extending subsidy and bail out the hapless farmers," he added.

 (Agencies)

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