Loan waiver would provide temporary relief and would not be beneficial to the farmer in the long run: M Venkaiah Naidu

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Inaugurating Agri-Vision 2019, a two-day conference on ‘Envisioning Agro Solutions for Smart and Sustainable Agriculture’ at Hyderabad, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu 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. He said that, the short-term measures like loan waiver would provide temporary relief and would not be beneficial to the farmer in the long run.

Indian agriculture sector accounts for 18 per cent of India’s GDP and provides employment to 50% of the workforce of the country. The introduction of high yielding varieties, additional irrigation facilities, increased input flow through fertilizers and pesticides, farm mechanization, enhanced credit facilities, buttressed by price support, and other rural infrastructure facilities ushered the green revolution over the past few decades. But a lot has to be done further.

The Vice President of India, Shri M Venkaiah Naidu has called for introduction of structural changes through policy interventions to bring in a positive bias towards agriculture and make it resilient, sustainable and profitable. Expressing his concern over the tendency of farmers to leave agriculture, the vice President said that 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.

He insisted that, traditional farming would not be beneficial and the farmer needs to diversify into allied activities to ensure sustained income.Observing that the growth of the agriculture sector was critically important for inclusive growth, Shri Naidu said that empowering the sector would not only reduce poverty but also helps in improving the livelihoods of lakhs of people connected to this vital sector.

Vice President urged researchers and farm experts to come out with solutions to the multi-dimensional problems faced by the farming sector. He called for united efforts by governments, scientific community, Krishi Vigyana Kendras and farmers to realize the ambitious goal of doubling farmers’ income by 2022. He also emphasized the need for India to have its own home-grown food security as the country cannot depend on imported food security.