To focus on the issues of farmers’ welfare, the government has taken several steps and created a separate Division called ‘Farmers Welfare’ under the charge of a senior officer. The Government believes, that farmers’ welfare will improve if there is increase in net income from the farms.
With this end in view, the approach is to reduce cost of cultivation, enable higher yield per unit and realize remunerative prices. Some of the important new initiatives in this context are:
Soil Health Card (SHC) scheme by which the farmers can know the exact nutrient level available in their soils which will ensure judicious use of fertilizer application and save money. The balanced use of fertilizer will also enhance productivity and ensure higher returns to the farmers.
Similarly, Neem Coated Urea is being promoted to regulate use urea, enhance its availability to the crop and cut on cost. The entire quantity of domestically manufactured is now neem coated.
Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) is being implemented with a view to promoting organic farming in the country. This will improve soil health and organic matter content and increase net income of the farmer so as to realize premium prices.
The Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY) is another innovative scheme to expand cultivated area with assured irrigation, reduce wastage of water and improve water use efficiency.
In order to promote reforms of the agricultural marketing sector and to provide a common electronic platform deployable in selected regulated markets across the country, national scheme called ‘National Agriculture Market’ (NAM) has been introduced.
The proposed new National Crop Insurance Scheme will protect the interest of farmers with a broader coverage towards crop losses and other such natural calamities. This is an intervention to cover the risks involved in farming.
Other measures taken for the benefit of the farmers include enhancement in the Minimum Support Prices (MSP) to eliminate distress sale of agricultural produce by farmers, support to the farmers from time to time like debt waiver/relief, interest subvention on crop loans, revival package for strengthening Short Term Rural Cooperative Credit Structure, etc
This information was given by the Minister of State for Agriculture & Farmers Welfare Mohanbhai Kalyanjibhai Kundaria in Lok Sabha.