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Farmers’ income, food security in focus as new ministers take charge

NEW DELHI:Shivraj Chouhan, who took charge as the Union agriculture and farmers’ welfare minister in the new Narendra Modi administration, has his sights trained on boosting farmers’ income.

Chouhan, who replaces Arjun Munda in the agriculture ministry, also took charge of the rural development ministry on Tuesday.

“The prime minister has resolved to double the income of farmers. The government will take every possible step for the welfare of farmers," Chouhan, a former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh, told reporters after he was sworn in into the Union cabinet.

The Bharatiya Janata Party-led National Democratic Alliance, which ruled the previous two administrations as well (2014-19 and 2019-24), has been committed to farmers’ welfare the past 10 years, he added.

Pralhad Joshi on Tuesday took charge as Union consumer affairs, food and public distribution minister, replacing Piyush Goyal. The ministry is “directly related to serving 80 crore (800 million) Indians through the PM Garib Kalyan Anna Yojana," he said.

The Union government’s flagship scheme provides free food grain to beneficiaries through the public distribution system. The food and public distribution ministry has a mandate to implement the world’s largest food security scheme, Joshi said, adding that his priority in the first 100 days of the new government will be to implement activities identified by Goyal.

Joshi said he will also focus on strengthening the procurement and distribution of foodgrains under the National Food Security Act.

Joshi also retains his post as the minister for new and renewable energy in the new administration.

Rajiv Ranjan Singh has been appointed Union minister of fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying, replacing Parshottam Rupala. He

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