During a press conference organised in National Academy of Agriculture Science, Pusa, Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh emphasised on Government’s priority on enhancing agriculture production and productivity.
Singh mentioned various initiatives and achievements of the Government during last seven months, to make the farmer-oriented policy aimed at lessening the distance between lab-to-land and infuse a new confidence among farmers.
Government has taken an initiative to ensure integrated soil management. During 2007-08 to April 2014, an amount of Rs 112 crore was released for soil testing laboratories, whereas Rs 86 crore has been released after May 2014. The Government has sanctioned Rs 568.54 crore for the next three years to provide Soil Health Card to 14.5 crore farmers.
Besides, the Government has started National e-governance Scheme in agriculture sector with an allocation of Rs 886 crore.
Technical support to farmers in agriculture sector has been a problem area. To tackle this problem, we have set up 913 Farm Machinery Banks, he said. Farmers will be able to take equipments on hire basis from these banks.
In addition, we have distributed 72,627 farm machinery equipments during last six months, Singh mentioned. An amount of Rs 1,345 crore has been sanctioned to states for machinery banks and equipments/instruments whereas during 2013-14 figure for farm mechanisation was Rs 1,213 crore only.
An allocation of 50 percent under National Food Security Mission (NFSM) had been made for growth of pulses so as to encourage cultivation of pulses. Also, a decision has been taken to start the cultivation of pulses in the states of Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and the North-Eastern States including Sikkim.
The Government has increased the subsidy amount to Rs 300/ha from Rs 100/ha to promote bio-fertilisers. The Government has established a special fund of Rs 500 crore as an important initiative. With the setting up of this Price Stabilisation Fund, farmers will be able to get fair price of their products.
The Government has made several initiatives for development of Animal Husbandry, Dairy and Fisheries sector under the National Gokul Mission. An allocation of Rs 500 crore has been made to protect and promote the breed of desi cows. So far, project of Rs 378 crore has been sanctioned and Rs 123 crore has been released during the current financial year.
The fisheries guidelines have been simplified further. Fishing boats of 15 mtr size or more can enter exclusive economic zone to catch fish. In case of death of fishermen, insurance amount has been increased from Rs 1.00 lakh to Rs 2.00 lakh. Sanction for housing for 830 fishermen under Fishermen Welfare Scheme has been issued. Government will adopt latest technologies to promote Blue Revolution in the country.
Under Mission Blue Revolution and RKVY, Government plans to establish new breeding centres cages, manufacturing of marine cages and cold water fishing with a provision of Rs 157 crore.
They aim to increase milk production to 150 million tonnes by 2016-17 and also organised dairy market will be extended.
During the conference, Singh mentioned that there will be definite results of all these initiatives taken by the Government in the time to come and there will be growth in agricultural sector and welfare of farmers will be promoted. He hoped that agriculture’s contribution in GDP will touch newer heights with these initiatives.