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Don’t seem to feel the pulse…

If soaring onion prices decided the fate of ruling parties in a few past elections, prices of pulses would impact on the fortunes of political parties immediately facing the elections. Already price of toor dhal, used widely for preparing sambar and a variety of other recipes, has hit the roof. Urad dhal, much needed for making idly, dosa and vada, is priced at Rs. 198 per kg. This spurt in prices appears unbearable by vast sections of the population that depend on pulses for protein intake. From the time of Rajiv Gandhi as prime minister (1984-89), the country has been talking of a mission approach for increasing pulses production. A leading corporate like Tatas has been engaged in a More Pulses programme. Yet sadly the impact seems to be poor.

Agriculture is more of a state subject. There is urgent need for the state governments to address this issue on priority. Pulses being short term crops that do not need much water, a concerted effort can help bring about increases in production over a couple of seasons.

 

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