INTERVIEW | Agriculture has become a lucrative profession: Chhattisgarh CM Bhupesh Baghel

Through Express news service

From the Gauthan ploy to the claims of soft Hindutva, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel spoke on a wide range of issues with The New Indian Express group’s editorial director, Prabhu Chawla, at the Kisan and Kisan summit. the award ceremony held in Raipur.

You have understood the capacity of capturing the voices of cows that the BJP did not understand. Cows can also get votes …
Previously, farmers supported a strong economic system with the cattle they owned, did business at fairs, which no longer exists. Farm equipment almost ended the usefulness of livestock. Cattle owners and villagers are forced to let the cattle go out into the open. After much thought and deliberation, we decided to have Gauthan (stable) and buy some cow dung. He convinced the cattle owners to keep cows with them or in Gauthan. This prevented livestock from damaging crops and moving on the roads.

But you artfully linked it to economics via politics …
Gauthan’s scheme turned out to be beneficial after we linked it to economics. It is the revival of the rural economy and there is no underlying policy in it. It is their working style (BJP) that is linked to “divide and conquer” and emotionally exploit the masses. The party asked for votes either on Lord Ram’s name or on cows.

Your personality is linked to the farm, the village and the forests. Tell us more.
I have been associated with agriculture and have been involved in it since my school days. It was already there in our family. I lived the life of a villager, actively involved in all local and religious festivals. My feelings are deeply rooted in rural life. We used to wake up in the wee hours of the growing season.

Have you ever plowed the field?
Yes. At a younger age, I was well used to farming exercises and the essential conditions that farmers experience for their crops. I can even milk the cows, take the buffaloes to the village ponds and even use the injection on the cattle.

Today, the younger generation is unwilling to make farming a profession.
I do not agree. This belief prevailed previously, but over the past three years the substantial increase in the net area planted to crops and the growing strength of farmers suggest that “farming is also seen as a profitable profession”. For example, in 2018 there were 15 lakh farmers who signed up to purchase paddy and today the figure has reached over 22 lakh.

You actively promote local sports in Chhattisgarh
Old traditions need to be improved. Various local, value-added products are sent out of state. All this revives traditions and widens the scope of commercial activities in rural areas. We try to preserve our own culture including traditional food, sports, thoughts, way of life and to live with them.

Doesn’t your Ram van gaman background suggest a competition (with BJP) on Ram’s name?
We are not in any competition. At Chhattisgarh, Ram is deeply rooted in our centuries-old culture. Lord Ram’s mother Kaushalya was born in Chandkhuri, not far from Raipur. The Ram-Ram tradition exists in our custom.

But don’t you pursue a gentle approach to the Hindutva?
Hindutva was invented by Savarkar and this concept was based on aggression, violence and hatred. He was rejected during his lifetime. Who is truly a Hindu – the compassionate person who believes in friendship, love, tolerance and social harmony. Savarkar’s Hindutva concept will not work.

About Keneth T. Graves

Check Also

AGRICULTURE: New price records reached in cattle and sheep sectors

The latest report on the profile of the red meat industry, produced by Quality Meat …