(The Gist of Kurukshetra)
16 Actions Points for Agriculture
16 Actions Points for Agriculture
● The key aspect of the Budget announcement was the 16 actions points for
boosting agricultural incomes. Let's elaborate each of the points in terms of
their impact over the agriculture and allied sector.
- The finance minister urged state governments to implement three model
laws enacted by the central government. Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act,
2016; Model Agricultural Produce and Live stock Marketing (Promotion and
Facilitation) Act,2017;Model Agricultural Produce and Livestock Contract
Farming and Services (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2018.
- Water stress-related issues are now a serious concern across the
country. The government is proposing comprehensive measures for one hundred
- While recalling her first budget speech of July2019, the Finance
Minister had stated that" annadata" can be "urjadata” too. The PM KUSUM
scheme removed farmers' dependence on diesel and kerosene and linked pump
sets to solar energy. She has proposed to expand the scheme to provide 20
lakh farmers for setting up stand-alone solar pumps and additional 15lakh
farmers solarise their grid-connected pumpsets. Besides, a scheme to enable
farmers to setup solar power generation capacity on their fallow or barren
lands and to sell it to the grid would be operationalised.
- The finance minister stressed the need for encouraging balance duse of
all kinds of fertilisers including the traditional organic and other
innovative fertilisers. She stressed the need for taking necessary steps to
change the prevailing incentive regime (in terms of providing fertiliser
subsidy), which encourages excessive use of chemical fertilisers. Excessive
and imbalanced use of fertilisers at present is adversely impacting the
environment as well as public health.
- India has an estimated capacity of 162 million tonnes (MT) of agri-warehousing,
cold storage, reefer van facilities, etc. NABARD will undertake an exercise
to map and geo-tag them. In Addition, the Finance Minister has proposed
creating warehousing, in line with Warehouse Development and Regulatory
Authority (WDRA) norms. The central government would provide Viability Gap
Funding for setting up such efficient warehouses at the block and taluk
level. This can be achieved where States can facilitate land and are on a
PPP mode Food Corporation of India (FCI) and Central Warehousing Corporation
(CWC) would undertake such warehouse building on their land. In the absence
of warehousing, a significant chunk of the produce, especially fruits and
vegetables gets destroyed thus impacting the farmers' income.
- For building backward linkages in the agricultural sector, the Budget
has proposed a village storage scheme whichM would be run by the Self-help
Groups (SHGs). This will provide farmers the ability to hold stocks of
agricultural produce at the village level and reduce their logistics cost.
Finance minister aptly referred to this measure by stating that women SHGs
shall regain their position as 'Dhaanya Lakshmi'.
- The Finance minister also gave thrust on building a seamless national
cold supply chain for perishables, inclusive of milk, meat and fish for
which the Indian Railways will set up a 'Kisan Rail' through PPP mode.
Refrigerated coaches would be available in Express and Freight Trains as
well under the proposal announced. This move would likely reduce the
transport cost of the milk. This measure would help in transporting milk
from milk surplus regions (northern, western and southern parts of the
country) to milk deficit regions (eastern and north-eastern parts) at lower
- 'Krishi Udaan' will be launched by the Ministry Of Civil Aviation on
international and national routes. This will immensely help improve value
realization especially in North-East and tribal districts. Through
collaboration with a private airline, Tripura Government has initiated
exports of Queen Pineapple to Dubai and Doha Last year.
- Horticulture sector with its current producer of 311 MT exceeds
production of food grains. For better marketing and export, the Finance
minister has proposed supporting horticulture intensive states through
cluster-based approach with a focus on 'one product, one district'.
- The Budget also proposes expansion of integrated farming systems in
rained areas. Multi-tier cropping, bee-keeping, solar pumps, solar energy
production in non-cropping season will be added. Zero-Budget Natural Farming
(as mentioned in July 2019 Budget) shall also be included. The government
would strengthen online national organic products market portalon 'jaivik
- The Budget has stated that financing on Negotiable Warehousing Receipts
(e-NWR) has grossed more than Rs. 6000 crore. NWRs are documents issued by
warehouses to depositors (farmers) against commodities deposited in ware
houses. NWRs can be traded, sold, swapped and used as collateral to support
borrowing loans from banks. These receipts were made negotiable under
Warehouse (Development And Regulation) Act, 2007 and are regulated by
Warehousing Development and RegulatoryAuthority. The Finance Minister has
proposed integration of e-NWR with the e-NAM. Currently585 mendes have
joined the e-NAM portal andanother 400 mandis will be joining this
- Non-Banking Finance Companies (NBFCs) and cooperatives are active in the
agriculture credit space. The NABARD refinance scheme will be further
expanded. The Union Budget proposed increase in agriculture credit
disbursement target of Rs. 15 lakh crore for 2020-21 against actual
disbursement of close to Rs. 13 lakh crore in 2019-20. All eligible
beneficiaries of PAKISTAN will be covered under the Kisan Credit Card
- One of the significant measures announced by the Finance Minister was
increasing the milk processing capacity from 53.5 million MT currently to
108 million MT by 2025. This step would help in achieving the target set
under the National Action Plan on Dairy Development (prepared by Department
of Animal Husbandry and Dairy), of increasing organized milk handling by
both cooperatives and private sector by 20per percent and 30 percent
respectively by 2023-24 from the current level of 21per percent equally
shared by both. This will impact the building of village-level dairy
infrastructure, increase in milk procurement, manufacturing of milk products
and enhancement of marketing capacities.
- The Union Budget proposes to put in place a framework for development,
management and conservation of marine fishery resources. 'Blue Revolution'
is being implemented through a centrally-sponsored scheme for Integrated
Development and Management of Fisheries (IDMF) to achieve economic
prosperity of fishermen and fish farmers and to contribute towards food and
nutritional security through optimum utilisation of water resources for
fisheries development in a sustainable manner, keeping In view the bio
security and environmental concerns. It has been targeted to enhance the
fish production from 107.95 lakh tonnes in 2015-16 to about 150 lakh tonnes
by the end of 2019-20 under IDMF.
- Youth in coastal areas benefit through fish processing and marketing. By
2022-23, the Finance Minister has aimed at raising fish production to 200
lakh tonnes. The government would promote the growth of algae, sea-weedand
cage culture. The government would involve youth in fishery extension
through 3477Sagar Mitras and 500 Fish Farmer Producer Organisations and set
up a target of fishery exports worth of Rs. 1lakh crore by 2024-25.
- Under DeenDayalAntyodaya Yojana-NationalUrban Livelihoods Mission, for
alleviation of poverty, 58 lakh SHGs have been mobilised. TheUnion Budget
has proposed to expand mobilisation of more SHGs