The Centre has infused Rs 1,31,000 crore to boost agriculture and allied sectors with special emphasis on becoming an export-oriented economy as India has tremendous potential to satiate global demand, Union Minister Shobha Karandlaje said on Monday.
The minister was in Jammu and Kashmir's Kathua district as part of the Centre's public outreach programme.
Karandlaje e-inaugurated various projects of the public works department, costing Rs 519.50, lakh and laid e-foundation stones of different projects worth Rs 198.2 lakh.
She also inaugurated a pasteurised compost unit under the Trikuta mushroom corridor project at Burmal.
Karandlaje gave farming equipment, tractors, thrashers, combined harvesters, laser levellers to farmers besides Ladli Beti passbooks and adolescent kits to Integrated Child Development Services (ICDS) beneficiaries.
The Union minister of state for agriculture and farmers welfare said, "The government has infused Rs 1,31,000 crore to boost agriculture and allied sectors with special emphasis on becoming export oriented economy as India has tremendous potential to satiate global demand."
The Centre under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is keen to uplift the agriculture community by providing financial as well as technological support under various schemes run by the central government, Karandlaje said.
While highlighting the achievements of India in the agriculture sector, she said that India is making remarkable progress in this field which has further improved its ranking in terms of exporting agriculture-based products.
India now stands at the ninth position globally, Karandlaje said.
Projecting the recent stride made by India in agriculture production, the minister said the agriculture sector is now contributing over 20 per cent in India's GDP which is expected to grow further.
Referring to the initiatives of the central government to support farmers, the minister said under the PM-KISAN Yojana so far nine instalments have been credited into the accounts of 11 crore farmers through direct benefit transfer.
She exhorted the farming community to replicate best practices of other states, for which the government is extending every possible help under its resolve to double the farmers' income.
Underscoring the importance of mix farming in enhancing the economic capacity of farmers, Karandlaje said the idea was to provide sustainable means of earning vis-a-vis poultry, dairy, fisheries and apiculture so as to make farmers economically independent.
While appreciating the maiden proposal for establishing an all women farmer producer organisation (FPO) aimed at Exploring opportunities in organic farming' and supporting women self help groups, the minister said that similar initiatives should be carried forward so that more farmers could be benefitted.
She said that for smooth functioning of FPO, a separate corpus will be created through which the staff appointed shall be remunerated besides provision of low interest rate soft loans and subsidies shall be made.
The minister emphasised on the need for technological interventions like mechanised farming, branding, marketing, processing, value addition to farm products etc so that farmers could get remunerative prices for their produce.