Kailash Choudhary | 02 Aug, 2020
Indian civilisation is one of oldest civilisations in the world and
similarly Indian agriculture is also of the same age. Ancient Indian
farmers were quite rich because agriculture was the most advanced and
prestigious occupation of that time. Fifty per cent of the population is
still dependent on agriculture and occupations related to agriculture.
traditions, customs and religious culture were adversary affected along
with agriculture due to foreign invaders and rulers and our advanced
agriculture lagged behind as compared to other countries.
achieving freedom, with the support of our farmers and the manpower
related with agriculture, our country has become independent in terms of
food grains, cotton, sugar, milk, meat and poultry products. Today
India has become the main producer of cereals, milk, sugar, fruits,
vegetables, spices, eggs etc. The contribution of rice, meat and sea
foods is 52 per cent in the total export.
occupies only 2.4 per cent land of the world, proportionately we have
more cultivable land in the world which is capable to fulfill our
requirement of food grains. Moreover, we can supply food products all
over the world through exports.
The farmer-friendly Modi
government has initiated a new export policy to double the export price
by 2022. The government is planning to increase the export price from
$30 billion to $60 billion. A broad agriculture policy has been
initiated to take care of issues related to agriculture and agri-cells
have been established in many Indian embassies under this policy.
government has decided to develop the field of transport of goods and
courier facilities through innovations. As a result of the efforts made
by this government, the export of agricultural produce and products
related to agriculture has been increased to Rs 2.73 lakh crore. Today,
India is capable of supplying food to the other countries of the world.
Favourable climatic conditions, vast cultivable land, our hardworking
farmers etc. are factors which will certainly increase our agriculture
With a view to prepare Indian farmers to compete with
the farmers of other countries in a better way, opportunities are being
provided to them to adopt new and advanced technologies with the help of
the Centre and state governments, but this area needs further
development. It is the need of the hour to give priority to research for
the development of various high producing crops.
If we want to
compete with the world with respect to production, our farmer brothers
will have to use advanced technologies available in the global
community. Private investors will have to play an important role in
export oriented activities and the basic structure will have to be
Loss of food items could be reduced with structural
development work like godowns, cold storages and market yards etc. We
can encourage value added services by promoting the food processing
industry. By increasing quality of our products, we can attract other
countries to import our food products. These measures will help us
establishing/recognise "Brand India" at the international level.
efforts of the Centre and states are required to address the challenges
of export related problems. The Central government has provided new
financial packages to the agriculture sector to provide them all
possible help and the targets of the government to double their income
could be achieved.
The government is promoting agri-business
with a view to provide maximum benefit to the farmers. Amazon, Alibaba,
E-bay and Wallmart E-commerce agencies have brought revolutionary
changes through artificial intelligence and machine learning. In line
with the revolution of E-commerce, a platform of E agri/digital
agriculture is being prepared with the help of which agri-business
schemes will reach the major urban and town areas.
agencies like Big Basket and Grofers have helped in paving the way to
develop beneficial agri-business for their own with the help of
agriculture specialists. Green farm house, poly house and small bio
farms for growing vegetables etc. are becoming beneficial for the
farmers due to their quality and fair prices.
These days organic
farming is becoming popular among women farmers also. Today a farmer
can start agricultural business plan as a startup, develop it as a
source of permanent income and sell his products in the open market.
Medicinal plants like Aloe vera, Neem, Tulsi can be produced on a large
scale for medical and pharmaceutical sectors.
All efforts are
being made by the government to enable farmers to have freedom and
facility to sell his products as per his choice. The government is
encouraging innovations and advanced scientific agricultural techniques
for paving the way for reforms in agricultural sector and rural
development to ensure inclusive development.
Some of the important advanced agricultural techniques which can transform Indian Agriculture are as follows:
Bio Technology: This is a technique which helps the farmers produce
more in lesser area by use of advanced agricultural systems. This
technique is also environment friendly and helps in increasing food
production by the use of plant and animal wastes/residues.
Science: This is a technique which provides information to the farmers
through use of smart delivery system and nano sensors as to whether or
not plants are receiving water and other necessary inputs in adequate
quantity. Besides, it also provides information about the quality of
* Geo Spatial Farming: By adopting geo spatial
farming, agricultural production can be increased on a large scale.
Higher production can be achieved on the basis of factors like weeds,
quality of soil and its moisture content, production (fertility), rate
of seeds, need of fertilisers and other such factors.
* Big Data:
Big data will help in smart farming and it will help the farmers in
taking appropriate and timely decisions. This will help in forecasting
and advance estimates and will strengthen the agricultural development.
Drones: They help in increasing production by reducing costs and loss
in agricultural produce by supervision work. Advanced sensors,
capability of digital imaging, soil analysis, crop spraying, crop
monitoring, analysis of health of crops including fungus infection is
possible with the help of drone technique. Necessary permissions from
the Central government is to obtain for agriculture and other works.
Recently in Rajasthan, the role of drones has proved to be important in
safeguarding agricultural produce from locust attacks.
transform this challenge of worldwide spread of the Corona pandemic into
an opportunity as due to the epidemic, there is matter of concern of
lack of food items in the whole world. Due to this concern, there is a
big gap being observed in the supply and demand because people have
started storing food items. India can use this situation as an
opportunity so that it can pave the way of economic prosperity for our
farmers. This step will automatically provide opportunity in doubling
farmers' income by 2022 and will play a vital role in giving India an
important place in the agriculture sector.
Today's world is of
science and technology. Going with time, we should also develop
agriculture by using technologies in such a way so that they can be
helpful for us. Through technologies we can achieve our desired goal of
inclusive agricultural development.
* (The writer is Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India)