The Indian Council of Food and Agriculture (ICFA) has put in place a working group with exclusive focus on Uttar Pradesh to help realise the state's agri potential, create 1 lakh jobs and additional farm output value of Rs 50,000 crore over the next five years. The mandate is also to draw up a vision document on doubling the state farmers' income by 2022, in line with the call given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Launching the working group on Saturday, NABARD Managing Director Armol Pavnathan said Uttar Pradesh is agriculturally the largest state, and its progress determines that of the nation. Admitting that the scope for growth, value addition and agri businesses has not been fully explored, he made a case for implementing the Swaminathan formula for pricing of farm produce. The wish-list pertains to declaring MSP for pulses and oilseeds based on the Swaminathan formula of cost plus 50 per cent, imposing import duty of 25 per cent on pulses to protect farmers, lifting curbs on wheat exports, avoiding market glut and making trade of unproductive animals free to help farmers. ICFA Chairman M J Khan said 60 minds sourced from policymaking, research, industry and farming community will work on action strategy for reforms, to promote investments and technologies and create entrepreneurship opportunities in the state. ICFA has chosen Lakhimpur district in UP to launch first District Agriculture Council of the country, he added.
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