The government reappointed IIM-A professor Vijay Paul Sharma as chairman of CACP
The Centre has re-appointed Vijay Paul Sharma as chairman of the Commission for Agricultural Costs & Prices (CACP) after he resigned in May last year at the end of his five-year term.
The role of the CACP chairman will be critical in the planned minimum support price (MSP) and other reforms committees.
Vijay Paul Sharma, a professor at the Centre for Management in Agriculture at the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIM-A), was appointed CACP Chairman for the first time in June 2016.
He was essential in agreeing to the government’s decision to set the MSP at 50% of the cost of production. The MSP was previously recommended by a government-controlled authority based not just on input costs, but also on other factors such as global and domestic pricing, agricultural acreage, and so on.
While farmers demanded that the Swaminathan Commission recommendation on MSPs be accepted, the government agreed to fix MSPs at cost of production on an A2+FL basis, and CACP began recommending MSPs accordingly.
What exactly are A2 and FL?
A2: These are the out-of-pocket expenses experienced by farmers, such as loans for fertiliser, fuel, machinery, irrigation, and so on, as well as the cost of leasing land. A2+FL: The estimated worth of unpaid labour for agricultural harvestings, such as contributions from family members and others. It is in addition to the paid-out price.
After Sharma’s tenure expired, Naveen P Singh, a CACP member, took over as chairman. Last November, the Agriculture Ministry began the process of recruiting two members from the farming community from the north and west zones, which had been empty for several years.
The government has yet to constitute the committee on MSP and other reforms suggested by Prime Minister Narendra Modi during his announcement of the repeal of the three farm laws. One of the main requests was that MSPs be legally guaranteed so that no farmer sells his produce below a certain price, ensuring him a minimum return.