Agricultural Crisis and Farmers-friendly Reforms in India -

Agricultural Crisis and Farmers-friendly Reforms in India

By Professor G. Satyanarayana

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According to the Fifth Annual Employment-Unemployment Survey of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, 45.7 percent of Indias workforce in 2014-15 was employed in agriculture. Around 13 to 14 percent of Indias national income originates from the agricultural sector. Agricultural sector, thus, occupies a key position in the Indian economy, at least in terms of employment. Regrettably, agricultural sector in India has been witnessing loss of dynamism in recent years. The sector, as a whole, has showed poor performance lately. Signs of agrarian distress are visible in parts of the country. The spate of suicides by farmers in some areas is the most disconcerting manifestation of this distress. Marginal and small farmers have borne the brunt of the adverse circumstances in agriculture. Agricultural crisis has increased overtime due to a number of reasons but mainly owing to widening disparities between agricultural and non-agricultural sectors, resulting in burgeoning gap between the incomes generated per worker from the two sectors. Concerned by the slow growth in the agriculture and allied sectors, the Government of India has launched a series of programmes/schemes in recent years to rejuvenate agriculture and improve farm incomes. These, inter alia, have included the following: (a) Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY); (b) Pradhan Mantri Kisan SAMPADA Yojana; (c) Doubling Farmers Income by 2022-23; (d) Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY); (e) Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY); and (f) Farm Loan Waivers. Under National Agriculture Market (e-NAM), farmers can sell their produce on the internet. e-NAM is envisaged as a pan-India electronic trading portal which seeks to network the existing agricultural produce market committees (APMCs) and other market yards to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities. e-NAM is a virtual market but it has a physical market (mandi) at the back end. Indias future agricultural development will require much faster crop diversification in view of changes in consumption pattern. There is growing preference for milk and milk products, meat, poultry, fish, fruits and vegetables. Areas like horticulture and floriculture also hold promise as they have higher export potential. Accelerating the rate of growth of agricultural production must be seen as central to a more inclusive growth. It is imperative that the problems of farmers are addressed with a sense of urgency. The present work focuses on the issues and concerns impacting the Indian agriculture. More importantly, it explains the key reform measures undertaken in recent years to mitigate agrarian distress, modernize agriculture and improve the economic conditions of the farmers, particularly small and marginalized ones.

Product code: 9788177084689

ISBN 9788177084689
Dimensions (HxWxD in mm) H248xW190
No. Of Pages 278
Publisher New Century Publications