New Delhi, March 26 After Rahul Gandhi described the government's financial assistance package as a first step in the right direction, the Congress said it is "too little."
The party has demanded that harvest and procurement of crops should be put in the essential commodity list so that both can continue simultaneously.
"The government today announced a relief package for the vulnerable sections of society, including pensioners and others. However, is it not too little?" asked party spokesperson Randeep Surjewala.
He said the government should be sensitive to the woes of farmers and ensure that harvesting and procurement continue as the lockdown proceeds.
"A farmer has been offered Rs 2,000 through 'PM Kisan Yojana' from April 1. But, the farmer is supposed to be paid a sum of Rs 6,000 under the PM Kisan Yojana as per the PM's announcement before the oneset of corornavirus. Why cut Rs, 4,000 now? A farmer should be paid all of Rs 6,000 on April 1", surjewala said while speaking to reporters.
The Congress said party chief Sonia Gandhi has suggested a payment of Rs 7,500 over and above Rs 6,000 to farmers.
"Wheat crop in over 334 lakh hectare is now ready to be harvested. But the grain markets are shut," said Surjewala.
The party alleged that Food Corporation of India has not come up with a procurement policy and no gunny bags are currently available for farmers. "How should the farmer harvest and take his crop to the market? If farmers were to delay harvesting till April 15, they would lose 40% of the standing crop, a loss from which they will never be able to recover," said Surjewala.
( With inputs from IANS )