Lucknow, Dec.7 (ANI): Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav on Saturday said the Samajwadi Party (SP) has kept the interests of sugarcane farmers in mind while taking decisions.
He also added that sugar mills have incurred heavy losses as sugar prices have consistently gone down.
"Samajwadi Party (SP) works for the benefit of farmers, and all the decisions are taken keeping in mind the farmers' interests. The time when the price was decided, that time the market price of sugar was more. But here the market scenario has changed. The price of sugar has consistently gone down, due to which sugar mills have incurred heavy losses. Uttar Pradesh Government has given subsidies at a great range," he told media here today.
"Yesterday, we had a meeting with the Agriculture Minister, where Chief Minister of Karnataka and Maharashtra were also there, and on behalf of Uttar Pradesh, we conveyed our part. And, we have received aid from the Centre as well," he added.
Yadav further appealed to the sugarcane farmers to stay away from political groups that are trying to instigate them.
"Samajwadi Party wants that the farmers get the right price, sugar mills should function, and the economic condition of farmers to improve," he added.
Earlier on Friday, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar announced interest free loans to sugar mill owners to encourage them to produce raw sugar.
"In order to encourage farmer to produce a new product that is raw sugar, certain incentives have been planned. See India is producing refined sugar but we want to encourage them to produce raw sugar, which is a new product," Pawar said.
"Banks will be providing a loan of Rs. 7200 crores to the sugar industry and the Centre will give an interest subvention of 12 per cent. The loan repayment period will five years. The loans can only be used to pay sugarcane producing farmers. We have recommended that this raw sugar should be produced upto forty lakh tons per year," he added.
The move is seen as a major boost to the cash-strapped Sugar mills operating in India. The recommendation has been made by the Group of Ministers, constituted to look into issues faced by sugar industry.
Earlier on December 3, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Rajnath Singh visited the family of a farmer in Uttar Pradesh's Lakhimpur region who had committed suicide due to heavy debts. (ANI)