The Government of India’s move of imposing a ban on cotton exports has been severely condemned by Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi, who has called for an immediate revocation of the order of the Director General of Foreign Trade (DGFT).
In a letter addressed to the Prime Minister, the CM contended that it was a pre-meditated move of the millers to portray an artificial dearth of cotton in home market so as to provoke a ban, which would help them to obtain cotton from farmers at low prices.
The letter said that last year too cotton farmers were exposed to similar conditions when an abrupt ban was imposed on cotton exports, which caused Gujarat farmers to incur a loss of Rs. 140 billion. Against last year’s output of 9.8 million bales (1 bale =170 kg), this year the state is expected to produce 11.6 million bales of cotton, Mr. Modi claimed.
He further wrote that the Central Government’s step has transpired when global prices of cotton variety Shankar-6 are on a rise, and thus sought an exemption of the variety from export ban.
According to industry analysts, around 7.5 million bales of cotton from Gujarat, most of it being Shankar-6 variety, have already arrived in the market.
India’s overall cotton output for the current season (October-September) is pegged at 34 million bales, of which around 24 million bales have already reached the market.