Bring in structural changes to make agriculture resilient, sustainable and profitable: VP
- Inaugurating Agri-Vision 2019 on Envisioning Agro Solutions for Smart and Sustainable Agriculture at Hyderabad, VP stressed the need for a concerted action from all stakeholders to find comprehensive, long-term solutions to the multiple challenges faced by the agriculture sector.
- Short-term measures like loan waiver would provide temporary relief and would not be beneficial to the farmer in the long run.
- Lack of favourable terms of trade, the vagaries of monsoon, technology not reaching farmers in time and absence of proper marketing system were some of the reasons for agrarian problems.
- Declining productivity, diminishing and degrading natural resources, rapidly growing demand for food, stagnating farm incomes, fragmented land holdings and unprecedented climate change were some of the major challenges confronting Indian agriculture.
- Traditional farming would not be beneficial, and the farmer needs to diversify into allied activities to ensure sustained income.
- Growth of the agriculture sector was critically important for inclusive growth.
- Empowering the sector would not only reduce poverty but also helps in improving the livelihoods of lakhs of people connected to this vital sector.
- Agriculture sector accounts for 18 per cent of India’s GDP and provides employment to 50 per cent of the workforce of the country.
- There is need to accord top priority to farmer-oriented marketing, providing adequate cold storage facilities and refrigerator vans, focusing on food processing through value addition, extending timely and affordable credit to farmers and ensuring that innovations and technologies reach the farmers.
- Researchers and farm experts should come out with solutions to the multi-dimensional problems faced by the farming sector.
- United efforts by governments, scientific community, Krishi Vigyana Kendras and farmers to realize the ambitious goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022.
- Students pursuing agri courses must spend at least six months with farmers to have a firsthand understanding of the problems faced by the latter.
- Use of digital technologies was essential to tackle climate change and make farming environmentally relevant and sustainable.
If we wish to educate and empower our citizens, we have to remove the barriers which they face in accessing information: VP
- Making information and knowledge available to people in their own languages and dialects becomes extremely important in a country that is as diverse, as complex and as multi lingual as India, the Vice President said.
- VP was addressing the gathering at the demonstration of the machine language translation software ‘Saara’ in Hyderabad.
- It is mandatory that we remove the barriers which people face to access information and technology if we wish to educate and empower our citizens.
- Great linguistic diversity existed in India in the form of more than 19,500 raw mother tongues, there is need to protect and conserve India’s linguistic heritage. Our languages are a crucial part of who we are, our history and our evolution as a society.
- Many of our ancient languages were on the verge of decay because of decades’ worth of stagnation, lack of innovation and failure to adapt and adopt new ideas and new vocabulary.
- When a language died, it took with it the history of an entire culture.
- Instruction in schools could mandatorily be done in mother tongues.
- Machine Translation should be taken up as a National Mission so that information can be made available to our people in their own languages and scripts on a priority basis.
Global Trade Show- the flagship event in the run up to Vibrant Gujarat Summit inaugurated by PM in Gandhinagar
- The 9thedition of Vibrant Gujarat Summit gets underway at Mahatma Mandir Exhibition cum Convention Centre in Gandhinagar tomorrow.
- In the run up to the start of the Vibrant Gujarat Summit scheduled to be held during January 18-20, the Prime Minister inaugurated the Global Trade Show at the Exhibition centre.
- Vibrant Gujarat Summit was conceptualized in 2003 by the PM Narendra Modi who was then the CM of Gujarat, to re-establish Gujarat as a preferred investment destination.
- The Summit will provide a platform for brainstorming on agendas of global socio-economic development, knowledge sharing and forging effective partnerships.
The Highlights of Vibrant Gujarat 2019 include among others-
- International Conference on Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
- Exhibition on Futuristic Technologies and Space Exploration which offers a vision of the future of space travel.
- Seminar on Port Led Development & Strategies to establish India as the Trans-shipment Hub of Asia.
- Seminar on Make in India to showcase the Success Stories of Make in India program & key interventions by the Government.
- Seminar on Opportunities for Industry in Defence & Aerospace to sensitize participants about opportunities in defence and aeronautics in Gujarat, and to deliberate on a way forward for India and Gujarat to emerge as a manufacturing hub for defence and aeronautics.
UNNATI– Unispace Nanosatellite Assembly & Training programme of ISRO in Bengaluru
- UNNATI, a capacity building programme on Nanosatellite development, is an initiative by ISRO to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first United Nations conference on the exploration and peaceful uses of outer space (UNISPACE-50).
- The programme provides opportunities to the participating developing countries to strengthen in assembling, integrating and testing of Nanosatellite.
- UNNATI programme is planned to be conducted for 3 years by U.R. Rao Satellite Centre of ISRO in 3 batches and will target to benefit officials of 45 countries.
- Union Minister said space technology has been provided with more budgetary allocations during the last five years and now it is utilised in Infrastructure Developments like roads, Railway lines and most importantly in disaster management.
The role of the Small Farmers’ Agri-Business Consortium (SFAC) is commendable in realizing the vision of doubling farmers’ income by 2022
- In order to encourage small, medium and marginal farmers, the Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) are being promoted by Modi Government.
- In India, about 5000 FPOs are being formed by various organizations such as the SFAC, NABARD and State Governments.
- About 7.52 lakh small, medium and marginal farmers have been connected with FPOs.
- Various programs such as professional training, professional handholding, Delhi Kisan Mandi, FPO-Buyer e-interface portal and strengthening of basic infrastructure etc. are being implemented by the SFAC to make FPOs more sustainable.
- Besides this, Equity Grant, Credit Guarantee Fund scheme and Venture Capital Assistance scheme are being implemented with the objective of making FPOs financially self-reliant.
- Till now (since 2014), 349 FPOs have been provided capital subsidy of Rs 20 crore and in addition 38 FPOs have taken advantage of Credit Guarantee Fund scheme.
- SFAC is committed to benefiting more and more FPOs through e-NAM. Under this, 634 FPOs have been connected in 16 states to benefit small, medium and marginal farmers through e-NAM.
About Farmers Producers Organizations
- FPO is an entity formed by primary producers, viz. farmers, milk producers, fishermen, weavers, rural artisans, craftsmen. An FPO can be a Producer Company, a Cooperative Society or any other legal form which provides for sharing of profits/benefits among the members.
- The main aim of an FPO is to ensure better income for the producers through an organization of their own.
- Small producers do not have the large marketable surplus individually (both inputs and produce) to get the benefit of economies of scale.
- Besides, in agricultural marketing, there is a long chain of intermediaries who very often work non-transparently leading to the situation where the producer receives only a small part of the value that the ultimate consumer pays.
Roles of FPOs-Aggregation Model- (Pre Mandi-Operation)-
- To establish a collection centre to aggregate various lots of farmers, FPOs act as a custodian and facilitators for the member farmers produce
- Farmers remain the owners of their produce, price risk & return
- FPOs should aggregate similar quality of produce to make one lot, Separate lots should be made for different qualities
- Basic cleaning should be done by farmers for better price realization, Farmers to deliver produce at FPO’s collection centre
- FPOs to organize transport from collection centre to nearest e- NAM mandi & sensitize farmers to bring bigger lot sizes for ease of operations
Benefits to FPOs on e-NAM –
- Transparency in the trade
- Access to larger number of Buyers
- Intra Mandi Trade
- Inter Mandi Trade
- Correct weighment
- Assured & Timely online payment
- Personalized Dashboard and Information
- Access of Information on Mobile App about Prices and Trade