Cotton Corporation of India, a public sector undertaking and designated as Mini Rathna Company, has earned the wrath of the textile industry as well as that of the farmers for knowingly or unknowingly dancing to the tunes of cotton traders and some multinational companies and thereby causing havoc on the country’s economy.

Raja M Shanmugham, president, Tirupur Exporters Association, has sent an urgent message to Prime Minister Narendra Modi listing the  hardship caused to the cotton farmers and textile industry by the cotton traders-MNCs-CCI cartel which he alleged is manipulating the market through unjustifiable manner.

“This ploy has the potential to destabilise the textile industry which is the only labour intensive industry in the country. If the textile industry in India loses its competitiveness, we will be wiped out from the sector and it would be like a death blow to millions of workers and their families,” Shanmugham told The Pioneer.

He said that cotton traders and some MNCs were indulging in hoarding as well as manipulating the price of cotton to suit their convenience. “A few MNCs play a hatched game against the interest of our textile industry by way of hoarding a huge stock during the cotton yielding season by using their very low cost of international fund. Further, MNCs make use of CCI procured cotton stock also in their favour by booking in advance with CCI on a huge volume basis by making CCI establishment itself knowingly or unknowingly to sail with their hatched game plan  of  creating  an  artificial  demand  in  the  market  and  make  available  a staggered  supply  of  cotton  to  the  consuming  textile  mills,” Shanmugham said in his letter to the Prime Minister. The industrialist said that desi textile industry should get the preference during the  sale of cotton procured from Indian cotton farmers.

 “That is the only leverage we have in this highly competitive industry. Our demand is that traders and MNCs should be barred from trading in Indian cotton. The MNCs procure raw cotton to ease out the Indian textile industry out of the race. The CCI should allocate the cotton procured from Indian farmers to our own industries. The interests of the industry as well as that of the cotton farmers should be protected,” said Shanmugham.

The TEA wants the Government to issue a directive to the CCI to protect the interest of farmers and act as a facilitator or catalyst to accelerate the growth of value chain of textile industry. “Textile Mills are consisting of Small, Medium and Large enterprises and the CCI should supply cotton directly  to  the  above segments relating  to  their  capacities  instead  of  fixing  a  higher  benchmark  to  the quantities, which only benefit to either Corporates or MNCs in cotton trade,” said the TEA chief.

P Chengal Reddy, advisor to the Consortium of Indian Farmers’ Association (CIFA) expressed his reservation about the role played by the CCI in manipulating cotton prices. “The farmers should get the Minimum Support Price fixed by the Government. The CCI has a responsibility to ensure that the farmers get the MSP. We will approach the Prime Minister with a demand soon,” said Chengal Reddy. He said there was a deficiency in the availability of quality cotton cultivated in India . This is because of the non-availability of new and high yielding GM seeds,”  said Reddy. 

Published On : 30-10-2021

Source : The Daily Pioneer

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