(The Gist of Kurukshetra) BUDGET 2020-21: CHANGING THE LANDSCAPE OF RURAL ECONOMY INDIA [APRIL-2020]
BUDGET 2020-21: CHANGING THE LANDSCAPE OF RURAL ECONOMY
- Inclusive development is multifaceted and can be achieved through growth with equity – social, economic and political.
- In consideration with inclusiveness, special focus is given on rural development in the current budget 2020-21 to augment better life and sustained livelihood in rural India.
Overview of Agriculture:
- 70% of its rural households still depend primarily on agriculture for their livelihood, with 82% of farmers being small and marginal.
- The share of agriculture and allied sectors in the Gross Value Added (GVA) of the country at current prices has declined from 18.2% in 2014-15 to 16.5% in 2019-20, on account of relatively higher growth performance of non-agricultural sectors.
- The provision of agricultural credit has increased to Rs. 15 lakh crore (2020-21), considering the significance of agriculture in contributing to rural employment, farmers’ well being and special support to farmers in doubling their income.
Storage and Marketing:
- India has an estimated capacity of 162 million MT of agri-warehousing, cold storage, reefer van facilities etc.
- The budget proposed to create warehousing in line with Warehouse Development and Regulatory Authority (WDRA) norms.
- Government will provide Viability Gap Funding for setting up efficient warehouses at the block/taluk level.
Digital Rural Connectivity:
- The new economy is based on innovations that disrupt established business models. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), 3D printing, drones etc., are re-writing the world economic order.
- India has already embraced new paradigms such as the sharing economy with aggregator platforms and harnessing new technologies to enable direct benefit transfers and financial inclusion on a scale never imagined before.
- Using machine learning and AI in the Ayushman Bharat scheme by the health authorities and the medical fraternity can target diseases with an appropriately designed preventive regime.
- Increase in agricultural productivity and realization of reasonable prices for agricultural production is essential for doubling the farmers’ income by 2022.
- Now a days, agriculture sector is facing formidable challenges and a large number of farmers want to quit agriculture due to failure of crops, higher labour costs etc.
- The shift of focus of the Budget 2020-21 towards rural development and farmers’ welfare is no doubt a welcome step.
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