Can MSP be withheld over farm fires, asks Supreme Courtroom

Satya Prakash

Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 6

The Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to examine a suggestion that a portion of the minimum support price (MSP) should be withheld from farmers and released later only after a verification that they didn’t burn stubble.

However, a Bench headed by CJI SA Bobde sought to know, “Who is going to supervise and verify if a farmer has indulged in stubble burning?” Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said, “Tinkering with the MSP may not be in the interest of farmers.”

The Bench posted the matter for further hearing to October 16 after Mehta said the Centre would file a reply on the issue.

The court was dealing with a fresh plea filed by Vikrant Tongad, a farmer and an environment conservationist, who demanded “an alternative incentive mechanism be formulated for tweaking the amount of Rs 100 per quintal and its payment be deferred from within the MSP until it is verified that no stubble has been burnt.”

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