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Indian agriculture at a glance 2014

Indian agriculture at a glance 2014
Highlights

Indian Agriculture at a Glance 2014. The Immediate challenge to the Ministry of Agriculture when the new Government had taken over, was to sustain the increasing agricultural output of the country in the face of impending deficit rainfall in this year 2014-15.

The Immediate challenge to the Ministry of Agriculture when the new Government had taken over, was to sustain the increasing agricultural output of the country in the face of impending deficit rainfall in this year 2014-15. All the requisite preparatory measures were made in coordination with the State governments to have the District-wise contingency action plans in place and to bring in flexibility in the various schemes in order that the States are enabled to cope with any desired changes in the Approved Action Plans for tackling the situation arising out of deficit rainfall. With the perspective the Central Research Institute for Dry Land Agriculture (CRIDA) in collaboration with State Agricultural Universities and the State Governments has prepared crop contingency plans in respect of 576 districts across the country. Further, all necessary and appropriate steps have been taken to meet the seed and fertilizer requirement and to disseminate information and on suitable farming practices to be followed in such a situation.

INDIAN AGRICULTURE AT A GLANCE

  • Agriculture continues to be the backbone of Indian economy.
  • Agriculture sector employs 54.6% of the total workforce.
  • The total Share of Agriculture & Allied Sectors (Including Agriculture, Livestock, forestry and fishery sub sectors) in terms of percentage of Gross Domestic Product is 13.9 percent during 2013-14 at 2004-05 prices. [As per the estimates released by Central Statistics Office]
  • For the 12th Plan (2012-17), a growth target of 4 percent has been set for the Agriculture Sector
  • As per the 4th Advance Estimates of Production of food grains for 2013-14, total food grain production is estimated to be 264.77 Million Tonnes.

GROWTH STRATEGY

In order to keep up the momentum gained during the 11th Plan and achieve the targeted growth rate of 4% during the 12th Five Year Plan as also the ensure focused approach and to avoid overlap, all the ongoing 51 schemes of the Department have been restructured into five missions viz. National Food Security Mission (NFSM), Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture Mission (MIDH), National Mission on Oil Seed and Oil Palm (NMOOP), National Mission for Sustainable Agriculture (NMSA), and National Mission on Agricultural Extension & Technology (NMAET); five Central Sector Schemes viz. National Crop Insurance Programme (NCIP), Intergrated Scheme on Agri-Census & Statistics (ISAC&S), Integrated Scheme of Agriculture Marketing (ISAM), Integrated Scheme of Agriculture Cooperation (ISAC) and Secretariat Economic Service; and one State Plan Scheme viz. Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana.

Recognizing the importance of Agriculture Sector, the Government during the budget 2014-15 took a number of steps for sustainable development of Agriculture. These steps include enhanced institutional credit to farmers; promotion of scientific warehousing infrastructure including cold storages and cold chains in the country for increasing shelf life of agricultural produce; Improved access to irrigation through Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sichayee Yojana; provision of Price Stabilisation Fund to mitigate price volatality in agricultural produce; Mission mode scheme for Soil Health Card; Setting up of Agri-tech Infrastructure fund for making farming competitive and profitable; provide institutional finance to joint farming groups of “Bhoomi Heen Kisan” through NABARD; development of indigenous cattle breeds and promoting inland fisheries and other non-farm activities to supplement the income of farmers.

Details of the Initiatives are as follows:

Rashtriya Gokul Mission

India ranks first among the world’s milk producing Nations are such 1998 and milk production peaked at 137.97 million tonnes in 2013-14. India has the largest bovine population in the world. The bovine genetic resource of India is represented by 37 well recognized indigenous Breeds of cattle and 13 breeds of buffaloes. Indigenous bovines are robust and resilient and are particularly suited to the climate and environment of their respective breeding tracts. Rashtriya Gokul Mission a project under the National Program for Bovine Breeding and Dairy Development is being launched with the objective of conserving and developing indigenous Breeds in a focused and scientific manner. The potential to enhance the productivity of the indigenous breeds through professional farm management and superior nutrition, as well as gradation of indigenous bovine germplasm will be done with an outlay of Rs. 550 crores.

Rail Milk Network

In order to promote Agri Rail Network for transportation of milk, overs have been placed by AMUL and NDDB on behalf of Dairy Cooperative Federations for procurement of 36 new Rail Milk Tankers and will be made available by Railways. This will help in movement of milk from milk surplus areas to areas of demand providing dairy farmers with greater market areas.

  • An allocation of Rs. 50 crore for development of indigenous cattle breed has been provided.
  • ‘Blue Revolution’ for development of inland fisheries being initiated with a sum of Rs. 50 crore
  • Target for providing institutional agricultural credit to farmers during 2014-15 has been enhanced to Rs. 8 lakh crore which is expected to surpass.
  • Agriculture credit at a concessional rate of 7% with an interest subvention of 3% for timely repayment will continue during 2014-15.
  • An allocation of Rs. 5,000 crore for 2014-15 has been made for scientific warehousing infrastructure for increasing shelf life of agricultural produce and thereby increasing the earning capacity of farmers.
  • A higher allocation of Rs. 25,000 crore has been made to the corpus of Rural Infrastructure Development Fund during 2014-15 which helps in creation of infrastructure in agriculture and rural sectors.
  • An initial corpus of Rs. 4,000 crore is being created to set up long term rural credit fund in NABARD to give a boost to long term investment credit in agriculture.
  • For ensuring increased and uninterrupted credit flow to farmers and to avoid high cost market borrowings by NABARD an amount of Rs. 50,000 crore during 2014-15 has been made for Short Term Cooperative Rural Credit (STCRC-refinance fund).
  • To improve access to irrigation, Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sichayee Yojana has been initiated with a sum of Rs. 1,000 crore in the year 2014-15.
  • To mitigate price volatility in the agricultural produce a sum of Rs. 500 crore has been provided for Price Stabilization Fund.
  • Government has initiated a scheme for Soil Health Card for every farmer in a mission mode with an initial allocation of Rs. 100 crore in 2014-15.
  • An additional amount of Rs. 56 crore has been made to set up 100 mobile soil testing laboratories countrywide.
  • National Adaptation Fund for climate change has been established with an initial allocation of Rs. 100 crore.
  • To protect landless farmers from money lenders 5 lakh joint farming groups of Bhoomiheen Kisan will be financed through NABARD in the current financial year.
  • A Kisan TV - Channel dedicated to agriculture will be launched with the initial allocation of Rs. 100 crores in the current financial year.
  • An initial allocation of Rs. 200 crore has been allocated for establishing Agriculture Universities in Andhra Pradesh and Rajasthan and Horticulture Universities in Telangana and Haryana.
  • An allocation of Rs. 100 crore has been made in the current financial year for setting up of two institutions of excellence in Assam and Jharkhand which will be at par with Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa.
  • An allocation of Rs.100 crore is made for 2014-15 for setting up Agri-tech Infrastructure Fund with a view to increasing public and private investments in agriculture and making farming competitive and profitable.
  • Various initiatives taken by Government to support agriculture and allied sectors is to sustain the growth rate at 4%.
  • In order to increase profitability for small and marginal farmers, Rs. 200 crore has been earmarked for setting up of 2000 Farmer Producer Organisations.
  • Wage employment under MGNREGA will be mainly used for more productive asset creation substantially linked to agriculture & allied activities.
  • Sum of Rs. 14,389 crore for Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana for 2014-15 which will improve access for rural population including farmers.
  • With a view to promoting farmers and consumers interest setting up of a national market will be accelerated by encouraging States to modify their APMC Act and other market reforms.
  • With a view to develop commercial organic farming in the North Eastern Region a sum of Rs. 100 crore has been allocated.

Central Government recognizes and discharges its responsibility to assist State Governments in overall development of Agriculture sector. Effective policy measures are in position to improve agricultural production and productivity and address problems of farmers. State Governments are also impressed upon to allocate adequate funds for development of agriculture sector in State plan, as well as initiate other measures required for achieving targeted agricultural growth rate and address problem of farmers.

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