Budget: 16 action points on farmer’s income, storage, blue economy and animal husbandry
New Delhi, February 2, 2020
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Saturday proposed 16 action points focusing on doubling farmers income by 2022, horticulture sector, food storage, animal husbandry and blue economy.
Presenting the Union Budget for 2020-21 in Parliament, the Minister said it was proposed to expand PM-KUSUM to 20 lakh farmers for setting up stand-alone solar pumps and help another 15 lakh farmers solarise their grid-connected pump sets.
She proposed to operationalize a scheme to enable farmers to set up solar power generation capacity on their fallow/barren lands and to sell it to the grid. She stressed the need to encourage balanced use of all kinds of fertilizers and Zero Budget Natural Farming (ZBNF). She proposed the integration of negotiable warehousing receipts (e-NWR) and National Agricultural Market (e-NAM).
“Integrated farming systems for rainfed areas shall be expanded. Multi-tier cropping, beekeeping, solar pumps, solar energy production in non-cropping season will be added. The portal on 'Jaivik kheti' – online national organic products market will also be strengthened,” she added.
To address concerns related to water stress in various parts of the country, the Minister said, “Our government is proposing comprehensive measures for 100 water stressed districts”.
To promote storage infrastructure and reduce wastage of food grains, she proposed creation of warehouses through viability gap funding on a PPP mode at block level. She also proposed warehouse building by Food Corporation of India (FCI) and Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) on their land.
As a backward linkage, she proposed the village storage scheme to be run by Self Help Groups (SHGs).
Proposing to build a seamless national cold supply chain for perishables, inclusive of milk and meat, she said, “Indian Railways will set up Kisan Rail through PPP arrangements. There shall be refrigerated coaches in express and freight trains as well."
“To help improve value realization especially in North-East and tribal districts Krishi Udaan will be launched by the Ministry of Civil Aviation,” she added.
Recognizing the contribution of the animal husbandry sector in farmer’s income, She said the Foot and Mouth disease, brucellosis in cattle and peste des petits ruminants (PPR) in sheep and goat should be eliminated by 2025 and coverage of artificial insemination increased from 30% to 70%.
“We shall facilitate the doubling of milk processing capacity from 53.5 million MT to 108 million MT by 2025,” she said.
Setting agriculture credit target of Rs 15 lakh crore for the year 2020-21. She stated that all eligible beneficiaries of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN) will be covered under the Kisan Credit Card (KCC) scheme.
On horticulture, she said, “For better marketing and export, we propose supporting states which, adopting a cluster basis will focus on one product one district.”
She proposed to put in place a framework for development, management and conservation of marine fishery resources and promotion of algae, seaweed and cage culture that will assist in raising fish production to 200 lakh tonnes by 2022-23.
“Our government will involve youth in fishery extension through 3477 Sagar Mitras and 500 fish farmer producer organizations. We hope to raise fishery export to rupees 1 lakh crore by 2024-25.”
Following the spirit of Co-operative Federalism, Sitharaman also proposed to encourage those states governments who undertake the implementation of Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act, 2016; Model Agricultural Produce and Livestock Marketing (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2017 and Model Agricultural produce and Livestock Contract Farming and Services (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2018.