Chandigarh, Sep 16 (PTI) Senior Congress leader Bhupinder Singh Hooda on Thursday termed the recent increase in sugarcane rates by the Haryana government as “insufficient”.

The Leader of Opposition also claimed that the BJP-JJP government is fiercely marketing the increased price though it is “10 times less than what the previous Congress regime had done”.

“The increase in minimum support price (MSP) of all crops and FRP (the minimum price that mills have to pay to cane growers) of sugarcane is negligible as compared to the increasing cost of cultivation.

“The rate of sugarcane was increased by 165 per cent during the tenure of the Congress government in the state (2005-2014), that is, an increase of more than 16 per cent every year. But during the past seven years of the BJP regime, there was a total increase of 16 per cent, which is 10 times less than the Congress' time,” he said in a statement.

Hooda further said when the Congress formed the government in Haryana in 2005, farmers were getting only Rs 117 per quintal for sugarcane, but the rate was raised to Rs 310 per quintal by the party.

“In its seven years, the BJP government in the state has increased the rate of sugarcane to only Rs 362, increasing the rate only by Rs 52 per quintal,” he said.

The Haryana government recently increased the sugarcane price by Rs 12 per quintal to Rs 362 per quintal, for the 2021-22 crushing season.

"The highest price of sugarcane in the country is being provided in Haryana," state Agriculture Minister J P Dalal had said.

The former CM said the price of petrol and diesel, cost of sugarcane cultivation, farm labour, fertiliser, seeds, pesticides, insecticides and farming equipment have increased significantly.

“During the Congress government, the price of diesel in Haryana was about Rs 56 per litre, which has now increased to about Rs 90 per litre,” he said.

“The increase in MSP and sugarcane price is negligible compared to the cost increase in the last seven years,” he said.

Hooda added that during the Congress government's time, farmers used to get payment for sugarcane within 15 days.

“But during the current government, farmers' arrears remain stuck in mills for several months. Even today, farmers have hundreds of crores of rupees outstanding in Naraingarh mill, the payment of which is pending,” he said.