New Delhi, July 11 (IANS) The number of farmer suicides has declined in the last five years, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Thursday, blaming successive Congress governments for the present plight of farmers in the country.
Singh said this in the Lok Sabha while responding to allegations of Congress leader Rahul Gandhi who blamed the Centre for the "terrible plight" of farmers.
"As far as farmers' condition is concerned, it did not happen in only four-five years. People who ran the government for decades are responsible for the condition of farmers," the Minister said.
Speaking during Zero Hour, Singh said that several efforts were being made to double the income of farmers and asserted that their condition had improved since Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister.
"I firmly say that the Minimum Support Price (MSP) increased by this government was never ever increased by any previous governments in the history of free India."
As per a report, the income of farmers has risen by 20-25 per cent under Modi, said the Minister. "We are committed to do many things and have taken several measures in this direction."
Denying Gandhi's allegation that farmer suicides had gone up under Modi, Singh shifted the blame on the Congress, saying "maximum suicides occurred in earlier governments".
"The number of farmer suicides has declined in the last five years."