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No Proposal On Milk Price Hike, Says Pawar

PTI 21 Jan 2010, 19:35:10 IST

Blaming media for creating a confusion on milk prices, Food and Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar said on Thursday  the Centre has no proposal before it for increasing milk rates. "We have no proposal before us on milk prices. This is all media creation," Pawar told reporters on the sidelines of a rural development conference in New Delhi. 

Seeking to set the record straight, Pawar said despite being the world's largest producer, per capita availability of milk does not even match that of other developing countries, leave aside the rich nations. "That is what I had said." He said 4 per cent growth in the milk production was larger than that of agriculture output. 

Pawar's remarks yesterday that the states need to take a decision on the demand for hiking milk prices triggered a sharp reaction from political parties protesting food inflation hovering close to 17 per cent. 

On UP Chief Minister's demand for removal of Pawar, the Union Agriculture Minister said the Centre finding a way out of the ban on imported raw sugar would have irked her. 

"The UP government had put restrictions on processing imported raw sugar. The Centre has found the way (to process outside UP), I think she must have got angry," Pawar said. 

Mayawati had threatened if Pawar was not removed, she would not attend the meeting of the Chief Ministers called by the Prime Minister on price rise. Milk prices in Delhi range between Rs 28-32 per litre.PTI