India, Jan. 19 -- MSP had no legal sanction when it was conceived and can also be challenged now

The propaganda minister of Adolf Hitler, Joseph Goebbels, believed that when a lie is told a hundred times, it becomes the truth. Similarly, a factoid is an item of unreliable information which is reported and repeated so often that it becomes accepted as fact.

This, in a nutshell, explains the conundrum of the minimum support price (MSP) on which there is an ongoing farmers strike around New Delhi. The MSP sets a floor below which prices for agricultural commodities do not fall.

There are 23 agricultural commodities listed by the central government under the MSP. Most Indians, with an agricultural background or not, think that the MSP conc...