Devinder Sharma (for Info only, not official)

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Devinder Sharma

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    ...Read in conjunction with the policy framework earlier laid out by the National Skill Development Council (NCDC), which aims to reduce the farming population from the existing 58% to 38% by 2022, the shift to corporate farming becomes obvious. Add to it the repeated emphasis on strengthening the network of electronic National Agriculture Market (e-NAM), which the finance minister accepted was integral to commodity trading, markets are being proposed as the essential route to double the farming income. A sum of Rs75 lakh is being provided to link the regulated mandis. ...

    Live Mint on Feb. 1, 2017, 8:59 p.m.

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    ...After reading the letter, addressed to “the Leaders of Greenpeace, the United Nations and Governments around the world”, one was greatly disappointed. Having met many Nobel laureates over the years, one does realise that a majority of them have rarely moved outside of their laboratories and conference halls. This letter shows they have little idea how the world outside their labs looks like. “How many poor people in the world must die before we consider this a ‘crime against humanity’?” The letter ends on this impassioned note. The question in particular is related to the acceptance of ‘golden rice’ which the GM industry has always been pushing as the answer to childhood blindness globally affecting 250,000 to 500,000 children every year. ...

    ABP on July 16, 2016, midnight

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    ...No wonder, the Union Cabinet has hinted of a substantial pay hike, more than the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. Against the recommended minimum basic salary of Rs 18,000 and a maximum of Rs 2,50,000 as per the Pay Commission, the Empowered Committee of Secretaries is expected to ask for a 24 per cent jump, which translates into a minimum basic pay of Rs 23,500 and a maximum of Rs 3,25,000. The bonanza for the government employees, coming at a time when the economy is showing no signs of tiding over the continuing crisis, hides the real intentions – it is an indirect rescue plan to bail out the industry. It is like hitting two birds with one stone. ...

    ABP on June 29, 2016, midnight

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    ...This is what their legitimate due is. It is however a different matter that after all the hard work they put in, despite two years of back-to-back drought, all that farmers have been promised by way of paddy price is a paltry Rs 1,470 per quintal for the common grade paddy they cultivate. Indian farmers have been short-changed all these years. At Rs 1,470 per quintal, the increase in paddy price is merely Rs 60 over the previous year’s price. The nominal increase in paddy price, which equals to a raise of 4.25 per cent, is less than the rate of food inflation. This is certainly a gross discrimination. At a time when the government employees get a steady increase in DA allowances every 6 months, even when wholesale prices have remained stagnant, and on top of it the DA they get is merged with the basic salary, I don’t understand the economic rationale of keeping farmers deliberately impoverished. ...

    ABP on June 3, 2016, midnight

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    ...The first is an article by IMF economists entitled Neoliberalism: Oversold? Writing in the journal Finance & Development (June 2016), IMF researchers Jonathan D Ostry, Prakash Loungani and Davide Furceri have raised serious questions about neoliberalism or what is generally perceived as market reforms and have rightly asked whether economists have policy makers have overhyped it. It concludes by saying that policy makers and even institutions like IMF should not be guided by blind faith but ‘by evidence of what has worked’. The second is an article entitled The case for a free-trade revolt by Eric Reguly published in The Globe and Mail. ...

    ABP on May 29, 2016, midnight

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    ...This is not a record to be proud of but is an indication of how economic growth has created an atmosphere where chopping a tree does not evoke any concern. The rise in temperatures is indirectly proportionate to the decimation of green cover. The more the chopping of trees, the higher is the temperature. I have never felt what it is like to be in 51 degrees but have lived in northwest areas which have often exceeded temperature hikes of 47 degrees. Even in such temperature extremes, the moment I pass through a cluster of trees a wave of relatively cold breeze is such a great feeling. The temperature difference is striking. At least, a difference of 2 to 3 degrees between a dense tree shade and what you feel when you are on a highway. ...

    ABP on May 22, 2016, midnight

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    ...This is a story of dried tears, when farmers in distress are left with only a Hobson choice – to throw away their produce in anger on the roads. First the story of tomato. Prices of tomato had crashed across the country – from Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh to Maharashtra, to Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Reports Financial Express (April 2, 2016): “A bumper tomato crop has led to a fall in the prices of tomato across Nashik and Pune districts in Maharashtra leading to despair among farmers who resorted to dumping the commodity on the roads in protest.” The Hans India published from Hyderabad (Feb 16, 2016) said: “Tomato growers in the Nalgonda district are in distress as prices have plummeted to as low as less than Rs 3 per kg due to a glut in arrivals.” If you noticed, the two news reports are spread over a three month period — February to April – when the tomato crop hits the market in central and south India. ...

    ABP on May 15, 2016, midnight

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    ...This is a story of dried tears, when farmers in distress are left with only a Hobson choice – to throw away their produce in anger on the roads. First the story of tomato. Prices of tomato had crashed across the country – from Chhattisgarh and Madhya Pradesh to Maharashtra, to Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka. Reports Financial Express (April 2, 2016): “A bumper tomato crop has led to a fall in the prices of tomato across Nashik and Pune districts in Maharashtra leading to despair among farmers who resorted to dumping the commodity on the roads in protest.” The Hans India published from Hyderabad (Feb 16, 2016) said: “Tomato growers in the Nalgonda district are in distress as prices have plummeted to as low as less than Rs 3 per kg due to a glut in arrivals.” If you noticed, the two news reports are spread over a three month period — February to April – when the tomato crop hits the market in central and south India. ...

    ABP on May 15, 2016, midnight