Government lifts cotton export ban, but under conditions

India has lifted a ban on export of row cotton amid protests by growers and importers as well as agriculture minister Sharad Pawar himself, but has set conditions for allowing fresh export contracts.

The government would also scrutinise all export orders as also consignments already handed over to the customs.

''Keeping in view the interests of the farmers, industry, and trade, a balanced view has been taken by the group of ministers (looking into the issue) to roll back the ban,'' commerce minister Anand Sharma said in a statement issued on Sunday.

The group of ministers headed by finance minister Pranab Mukherjee met on Friday and decided to roll back the ban subject to certain conditions.

Subsequently, the Director General of Foreign Trade today issued a notification, which clarifies the position that export orders already registered with DGFT so far but not yet exported will be expeditiously scrutinised to ensure that their papers are in order and revalidated.

The first priority will be given to those consignments, which have been handed over to customs, it said.