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Tuesday, January 26th, 2021

Agriculture Minister urges States to Achieve a Record Rabi Production ,National Conference for Rabi Campaign 2010 Inaugurated

INVC,, Delhi,, Sharad Pawar, Minister of Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution has urged all states to take full advantage of the prevailing favourable conditions to ensure a record Rabi production. Inaugurating the two National Conference on Agriculture for Rabi Campaign, 2010 here today, Shri Pawar said, the monsoon has been fairly active in September and the conditions for Rabi are very favourable. He assured the best possible assistance from his ministry in making available all inputs in time. Shri Pawar said, “Agriculture being a state subject, the State Governments have the primary role and responsibility for improving agriculture in their states. While the Central government would complement the efforts of the state governments, the real growth of the sector can be ensured only if the State Governments give centre stage to agriculture and allied activities in their development strategy. Higher allocation by Central Government to the sector needs to be matched by higher allocation by the states.” On the unspent balances with the states under various schemes, Shri Pawar said, “high unspent balances with the states is a matter of concern and is proving to be a limiting factor to release these funds expeditiously. I would urge all the states to utilise the funds fully in an efficient and effective manner.” The Minister pointed out that despite a bad monsoon last year, the total food grain production for 2009-10 is likely to be 218 million tonnes as against the target of 239 million tonnes. He said, “The Monsoon this year has been good. However, because of deficient rainfall in major rice producing states such as West Bengal, Bihar and Jharkhand, paddy production may not be as good as we had initially expected.” Drawing attention to pending reforms in agriculture sector, he observed, “ The pace of marketing reforms leaves much to be desired. I urge states to have these reforms in place quickly. This will create an enabling environment for farmers and agro industry. In extension, we have to upscale the success achieved with ATMA and introduce innovative mechanisms to reach out to farmers as quickly as possible. The farmers need knowledge of the best practices to give their best. With increasing cost of inputs, we have to get optimum returns on investments and inputs. There is need for reduction of wastage in storage and improving efficiency of food supply chain. Incentives in this regard have been made more attractive to attract private investment. These need to be followed up vigorously. Reducing the gap between farm gate and retail prices, by minimizing cost of intermediation in the supply chain, is essential for better returns not only to farmers but also for consumers. Considering that agriculture sector utilises 80 percent of the water, there is immediate need for improving water use efficiency.” On price rise, he said, a good monsoon and prospects of a good Kharif and Rabi have sobering effect on prices. The most effective way to keep prices under control is ensuring adequate availability through higher production and productivity to meet the requirement of increasing population with increasing income, the Minister asserted. The Minister of State for Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, in his address, said that slow growth of productivity in rice is a cause of concern. He said, the department has taken action to identify high yielding hybrids and varieties for increasing productivity of rice. Prof. Thomas also complimented research institutes and agricultural universities for coming up with some very promising hybrids which have the potential to significantly improve rice productivity. Three books- namely, A Handbook of Quality Seed Production of Stress Tolerant Rice, Guidelines for Seed Production of Hybrid Rice and Drought 2009 Review and Management were released on the occasion. The two day conference organized to assess the preparedness of the States for production of Rabi crops and to supplement their efforts by ensuring timely availability of critical inputs like seeds, fertilizers, is being attended by the Vice Chancellors of State Agricultural Universities, Agriculture Production Commissioners, Principal Secretaries and other officials from Ministries and Departments of Central and State Governments. [caption id="attachment_18736" align="alignleft" width="300" caption="The Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Agriculture, Shri Sharad Pawar releasing a book at the inauguration of the National Conference on Agriculture for Rabi Campaign 2010, in New Delhi on September 17, 2010. The Minister of State for Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Prof. K.V. Thomas is also seen."]The Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Agriculture, Shri Sharad Pawar releasing a book at the inauguration of the National Conference on Agriculture for Rabi Campaign 2010, in New Delhi on September 17, 2010. 	The Minister of State for Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Prof. K.V. Thomas is also seen.[/caption]null The Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and Agriculture, Shri Sharad Pawar releasing a book at the inauguration of the National Conference on Agriculture for Rabi Campaign 2010, in New Delhi on September 17, 2010.

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