CM will chair meeting on tobacco issues: Minister ST Somashekar

Mysuru, April 16:- A meeting regarding the problems of tobacco growers was held at the Zilla Panchayat Hall here in the presence of District in-charge Minister ST Somashekar on Wednesday amid the nationwide lockdown to contain spread of coronavirus pandemic.

A detailed discussion was held regarding the upcoming challenges due to COVID-19. Public representatives, farmer leaders and officials of tobacco board shared their opinions. The district in-charge minister said that a meeting will be held in the presence of the Chief Minister and representatives of companies buying tobacco and officials of the tobacco board before taking the final call.

MLAs HP Manjunath, K Mahadev, Anil Chikkamadu and B Harshavardhan discussed the availability of fertilisers and market pricing.

“European countries are highly affected by the COVID-19. If there is no demand for our tobacco from Europe, growers here will have a tough time. We can also think of announcing crop holiday and alternate crops,” said former minister AH Vishwanath.

“Andhra Pradesh has announced crop holiday in the 1990s. If we decide on the same lines, other states will benefit but our farmers lose. For that, it is better if we allow our farmers to grow less quantity. The central government will provide the fertilisers required,” said Mysuru-Kodagu Member of Parliament Pratap Simha.

Deputy Commissioner Abhiram G Sankar and other officials were present. (MR/KS)

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