The Government is taking steps to remove debt problems of the farmers. For, this, the Government has increased Agricultural Credit target Rs. 9 lakh crore for the year 2016-17 to bring the farmers within institutional fold. The Government is also planning for long term measures to remove the problems of the farmers. This was said by the Union Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare Minister Radha Mohan Singh. The Minister was speaking in the National Conference on Agriculture for Kharif Campaign in New Delhi.
He further said that in spite of a severe loss to the crops owing to unseasonable rainfall, hailstorm and other natural calamities, the whole foodgrain production which was 252.02 million tonnes in 2014-15 as per advance estimate (15.2.2016), it has been increased to 253.16 million tones on 2015-16. Speaking at the occasion he said that, the government has to double the farmers income in the next five years as is announced in the budget 2016-17. He said that the Government is focusing on seven points to achieve the target.
Increase in Production: The Centre has increased budgetary provision in irrigation sector. Government aims at ‘more crop per drop’. Government policy is focused on water preservation and irrigation and is working to increase the productions of other crops along with paddy and oilseeds.
More income less input: We can get higher productivity from the seeds when it get right amount of nutrients from the soil. Soil health card scheme can help in this regard. We are providing useful information to the farmers. In this programme, farmers will invest less and get more. It is necessary to regularize the cost of farming and to maintain the productivity of crops. Soil health promotion programme has been initiated for the preservation of soil health.
The Government has decided last year to produce only neem coated urea so that plants get nutrients easily. Further, Rs 20,000 per acre are being provided to the farmers to encourage them to adopt organic farming.
To increase the income of farmers by reducing their marketing expenditure: A national agriculture market is being set up for electronic trading. In this programme, 585 agriculture mandis of India will be connected to each other. The farmers will get maximum price of their crops and the interference of mediators will be reduced to a greater extent. Direct foreign investment is also being encouraged in this field.
Agriculture risk security: Under Prime Minister Fasal Bima Yojana, the farmers will be benefited on account of natural calamities like storms, earthquake and cyclone etc.
To reduce post-production losses production: The government of India has promoted region based strategy according to the climatic diversity of every state and region by implementing unified Horticulture Development Mission so as to develop horticulture sector as a whole. Under this mission, the government aims to promote technical setup, extension of area under horticulture crops, post-harvest management, processing and marketing etc. India ranks second on global scenario in horticultural crops after China.
Value addition: The Government is promoting processed food industry so as to make value addition in agricultural products. Not only this, but government is also chalking out its programme through different schemes to increase the production of fruits and vegetables and its processing with assistance of Ministry of Food Processing Industry. The government aims to increase it to 25 per cent by 2025 in comparison of 10 per cent in existing scenario.
Auxiliary Activities: This task will be executed partly through livestock, dairy, poultry, beekeeping, agriculture ponds and fisheries. Simultaneously, the efforts are being made to increase the income of farmers by planting trees in the fields and installing solar panels there.
Singh informed that to increase availability of seeds in north east states, National Seeds Corporation had asked Govt of West Bengal, Jharkhand and Bihar to provide land to establish production centres. West Bengal and Jharkhand have given land and it is expected that Bihar will do the same very soon. The Minister also said that to establish an institution like Central Institute of Agricultural Engineering, Bhopal; Maharashtra, Gujarat, Bihar were requested to provide land.