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Agriculture Sector status, role, problems and step taken by Indian government

agriculture infrastructure upsc
agriculture infrastructure UPSC

Status of The agriculture sector in the Indian economy:

  •  60-70 % population is, directly and indirectly, dependent on agriculture. 
  •  16-17 % of GDP share. 
  •  Highest arable land in the world. The second is the USA.
  •  Low productivity
  •  Productivity, landholding, agricultural infrastructure, pattern & distribution vary from state to state and within the state also. 

 Role of Agriculture in Indian Economy:

  • In national income Largest employment sector
  • Food security and surplus food for export  
  • Raw material to agriculture industries 
  • Capital formation 

 Present Issues in the Agriculture Sector:

  • Fragmentation of land/ small landholding: average landholding was 2.28 hectares during 1970-80, today average land holding is less than 0.5 hectares. Although it varies from state to state the same is largely true. 
  • Irrigation: 1/3 rd of crop area comes under irrigation land. Although India has the second-highest irrigation land after china, however, irrigation is one of the major problems and causes much death of the farmers.
  • Lack of mechanization: It varies from state to state 
  • Soil erosion/soil degradation 
  • Over fertilizer/ pesticide 
  • Unsustainable practices in some parts of the countries 
  • Inadequate storage facilities Scarcity of capital
  • The landlord role
  • Debt burden to farmers
  • Poor basic infrastructure like transport, power, and produce does not meet international standards. Lack of backward and forward linkage in the agriculture sector. Backward linkages of food processing units are Farmer, Farmer producer organizations, Self-help groups, and farmer groups. Forward linkage is wholesaler, retailer, exporter, etc. 
  • Current agriculture price policy also causing many problems than solutions,  benefits are mostly to the large farmer and lead to unsustainable and skewed production of the selected crop
  • Lack of R &D 

Types of Crop By season-wise:

  • Kharif (Jul to October in north India): Major crops are Paddy, Maize, Sugarcane, Cotton, Jowar, and Bajra.
  • Ravi ( November to February in North India): Major crops are: Wheat, Grams, Pea, and oilseed. 
  •  Zaid (March to Jun in north India): Major crops are fruits and vegetable items. 

 By usage wise, four types

  • Food Crop ( Paddy, Maize, Jowar, Bajra, oilseed, etc) 
  • Cash crop ( sugarcane, cotton, tobacco, jute, etc)
  • Plantation crops ( Tea, coffee, Rubber, etc)
  • Horticulture ( vegetable and fruits) 

Recent Government Scheme and initiatives in Agriculture

  • Soil Health card: issued every 3 years, the crop-wise recommendation of nutrient and fertilizer. Pradhan Mantri Krishi SinchaeeYojna
  • Per drop more crop
  • Sprinkle and the drip irrigation method 
  • Organic farming: Sikkim is India’s first organic state
  • Soil fertility and biological diversity 
  • Fertilizer uses neem coated urea. 
  •  Solar pump
  •  Cold storage and food processing 
  •  E-NAM
  •  PM Fasal Bima Yojna 
  •  Model Land leasing law and contract farming

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