TRS MP from Nizamabad, Kalvakuntla Kavitha urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday, to set up a national turmeric board, to protect the interest of turmeric farmers in the country.
Kavitha met the Prime Minister in New Delhi on Thursday, along with other MPs and MLAs from Telangana, where the turmeric crop was extensively grown.
Stating that turmeric farmers were unable to get the minimum support price for their produce, she reiterated her demand for a ban on turmeric import.
The Telangana MP also handed over letters from the Chief Ministers of Maharashtra and Assam, which supported her move to set up a board.
The MP plans to meet Minister for External Affairs, Sushma Swaraj, on Friday.
This comes after Kavitha shot off a letter in May this year, to Union Minister of State, Commerce and Industry Nirmala Sitharaman, stating that turmeric farmers in India would continue to suffer, unless and until the import of cheaper turmeric varieties into the country was banned.
Reiterating a long pending demand for a national turmeric board, the MP said that she had repeatedly raised the issue, including during two meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and three meetings with Sitharaman over the past three years.
She pointed out that she had led a delegation of turmeric farmers and met with Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh in May 2016.
She said that she had also raised the issue constantly in the Question Hour of the Lok Sabha.
The TRS MP had also moved a Private Member's Bill on the matter on March 24 this year.
In September last year, in a letter to the Centre, Kavitha had said, "India accounts for about 80% of the worldâ€™s turmeric production with about 1.5 lakh hectares under cultivation. Telangana occupies almost 40% of this area coverage and 63% of the production share in which my constituency of Nizamabad has one of the largest trading centres in the country."