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Indian Agriculture Grows Beyond Expectations

Under the leadership of our popular and visionary Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, the nation is reaping a bountiful harvest of all-round efforts made by the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare in the last eight years. Several innovative initiatives taken by the Ministry in the form of schemes and programmes, in order to ensure the commitment and accountability of the government, have resulted in ushering sweeping reforms in the direction and state of farmers and farming across the country. The livelihood standards of the farmers are improving and agricultural finances provided by the Centre are reaching them directly through bank accounts with complete transparency. The income of farmers has risen in various aspects and a new wave is visible as agriculture has emerged as a viable business proposition. Government’s schemes, programmes and all other activities have always been focussed towards this effort to empower farmers become agricultural entrepreneurs.
In the last 8 years, the budget allocation of the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare has been continuously hiked and several schemes rolled out with an aim to make agriculture sector farmer-friendly. The allocation of agriculture budget in the current financial year to about Rs 1.32 lakh crore is a reflection of the devotion of the central government towards the welfare of farmers. The budget allocation for agriculture has increased by almost 6 times in the last 8 years. The journey of development in the agriculture sector does not end here. Besides increased allocation, the record production of food grains and horticultural crops is also a proof of the budget allocation being spent in the right direction. According to the Third Advance Estimates for the year 2021-22, the production of food grains is estimated at about 315 million tonnes, while the production of the horticulture sector is also estimated at 334 million tonnes, which is the highest ever.
Indeed, it is no small matter that in the midst of the challenges of the Covid pandemic, India has supplied food grains to many needy countries and even during the Russia-Ukraine crisis, India has once again emerged as a major source of food grains supply to the world. Not only is the production of food grains showing a steady increase in the country at a record level, but the exports of agriculture produce is also rising continuously, which has reached almost Rs. 4 lakh crore.
Keeping in mind the better remuneration to farmers and their livelihood, the government has continuously increased the Minimum Support Price for Kharif, Rabi and other commercial crops. As a result the MSP of paddy rose to Rs. 1940 per quintal from Rs. 1310 per quintal in 2013-14. Similarly, in the year 2013-14, the MSP of wheat was Rs. 1400 per quintal, which is now rasied to Rs.2015 per quintal.
During the Rabi Marketing Season (RMS) 2021-22, 433.44 lakh MT of wheat was procured by the government at MSP, which is the highest ever. Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir have seen the highest procurement of wheat so far. The success story does not close here, data also reveals that a sum of Rs 85,604.40 crore was credited to 49.19 lakh wheat producing farmers during the RMS directly into their bank accounts in a transparent manner.
Continuing its commitment towards the farmers, the government has credited around Rs 1.82 lakh crore to about 11.5 crore farmers directly into their bank accounts under the Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Yojana (Total Rs.6,000 per annum in three equal instalments). This scheme is one of the most comprehensive and key schemes of the Central Government and also a symbol of devotion to farmers, in which there is no role for middlemen.
Fulfilling the government’s sincere efforts towards improving soil health, the Soil Health Card has been provided to crores of farmers. Keeping in mind the soil health, this scheme is making farmers aware of effective and better farming techniques to get better yield.
Under the guidance of Prime Minister Shri Modi, the Government has made special provision for Organic Farming as well as Natural Farming in this year’s general budget. Under this, special attention is paid to soil health with an objective of increasing farmers’ income through natural farming and conservation of resources and environment. In Uttarakhand, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal, works will be undertaken to bring an area of 5 km on both banks of the Ganges river under the Natural Farming through a comprehensive action plan.
The thinking of the government to promote natural farming does not stop here. The government has constituted a committee under the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) to include syllabus related to natural farming in undergraduate and postgraduate teaching courses, and chemical-free natural farming is being supported by the ministry and ICAR. Keeping in view the contemporary nature of natural farming, ICAR has issued special guidelines to agricultural universities to include research and allied subjects related to natural farming. Natural farming has been able to increase the income of the farmers and is a symbol of the novel thinking of the Central Government towards ensuring better living.
Besides various schemes and programmes, the dedication of the union government towards the farmers is also reflected in the Rs. 1,00,000 crore allocated for the Agricultural Infrastructure Fund and the government is committed to provide basic facilities like Godowns, Custom Hiring Centres, Primary Processing Units, Sorting and Grading Units and Cold storage. Through these basic facilities, the Government Is committed to provide remunerative prices to farmers for their produce.
In this series, the government, under the AatmaNirbhar Bharat Abhiyan (Self-Reliant India Campaign) is also giving special promotion to the National Beekeeping and Honey Mission. Similarly, through platforms and schemes like the National Agricultural Market (e-NAM), Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, Agricultural Mechanization and Cluster Development Programme under MIDH, the government is committed to provide maximum benefits to the farmers.
Under the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana, farmers have been provided with insurance cover in the event of a natural calamity. In order to bring more and more farmers under the crop insurance scheme, the “Meri Policy, Mere Haath” campaign has been launched. The importance of PM Crop Insurance Scheme can be gauged from the fact that farmers have deposited about Rs.21,000 crores of premium. while they have been reimbursed Rs 1.15 lakh crore as claims against crop damage.
Kisan Rail Scheme is another very important concept of PM Shri Modi for faster transportation of agricultural produce, under which special trains are being run for the swift movement of perishable agricultural produce. This is a major illustration of the government’s commitment and credibility towards the farmers. The success of Kisan Rail can be gauged from the fact that so far about 2,500 train trips have been conducted on about 175 routes across the country.
This year’s budget of the Ministry of Agriculture has given special emphasis on agriculture Startups and agri-entrepreneurship. Work is being done very fast in this direction, and the results are also visible. Through the farmer friendly schemes of the Government of India, it is high time our agriculture sector scales new highs. Many hopes and expectations rest on the agriculture sector, which the government under the leadership of our generous and able Prime Minister Shri Modi understands well and is chugging full steam towards reaching its destination.
At present, the government, along with the public, is celebrating the ‘Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav’ all over the country. All the ministries and departments of the Centre, state governments and their organizations are mobilized in celebrating this grand festival. In its continuation, the Union Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, showing dedication towards farmers, celebrated ‘Kisan Bhagidari, Prrathmikta Hamari Abhiyan’ with great enthusiasm last April 25-30th. During this campaign, all the Departments of the Ministry of Agriculture, organizations and institutions under them including the Indian Council of Agricultural Research and about 725 Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) spread across the country organized Kisan Melas, Kisan Sammelans, seminars, workshops, webinars, round tables etc., in which a lot of union and state ministers and other public representatives including MPs and MLAs participated enthusiastically. In this way, when the nation celebrates the 100th Year of Independence, then the country will have a bird’s eye view of the evergreen agricultural sector of the Incomparable India. With this dream, we are all moving towards building an AatmaNirbhar Agriculture – AatmaNirbhar India (Self-Reliant Agriculture – Self-Reliant India).

Source: https://www.dailyexcelsior.com/indian-agriculture-blooms-beyond-expectations/

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