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Govt implementing Swaminathan panel report to boost farming

The government is implementing recommendations suggested in the Swaminathan Commission report to improve the living standards of farmers and uplift the farm sector, Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh said on August 8.

Singh said that the government has made budgetary provisions of Rs 2.11 lakh crore to implement policy reforms and new schemes in the agriculture sector.

In 2006, President of the National Commission on Farmers (NCF) Swaminathan had advised the then government to give more attention to the welfare of farmers along with agro-based thinking.

"The NCF had made a number of recommendations for enhancing the income of farmers. Keeping them in mind, the government has implemented a lot of reformatory schemes," Singh added.

The government has introduced the Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act, 2016, which is an important step in agricultural reforms.

“The interests of both – the landholders and the recipient of the lease – are protected. The implementation of market reforms has led to enhancement of transparency in the market. The e-National Agricultural Market (e-NAM) scheme links agriculture markets across the country,” Singh said.

Currently, there are 585 mandis and 22,000 rural markets across the country to enable small farmers to sell their produce in an effective way.

Keeping in view the recommendations of the National Commission on Farmers (NCF), the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) has developed 795 improved varieties of crops in the last four years to increase productivity and eliminate malnutrition.

About 495 of these improved varieties are tolerant to climate change, said Singh, adding that these have been handed over to farmers so they can take advantage of advanced varieties.

The agriculture commission has drawn the attention of science-based natural resources and sustainable production and development on the issue of unabated erosion of natural resources and climate change.

The government has taken a number of initiatives for the development of the agriculture sector, Singh said, adding that these measures helped in reducing the cost of production.

“These efforts have resulted in a significant transformation in their lives. Establishing the nationwide soil health card scheme is an important aspect of this thought,” Singh noted.

The government has created corpus funds for improving the infrastructure of dairy, cooperative, fisheries and aquaculture, animal husbandry, agriculture market and micro-irrigation sectors.

Singh pointed out that the government has adopted an income-oriented approach towards sustainable production keeping the welfare of agriculture, farmers and consumers in mind.

Source: https://www.moneycontrol.com/