Chief Minister Shri Shivraj Singh Chouhan has said that now focus will be centred on maintaining and increase historic 18 percent agriculture growth rate achieved by the state. For this, separate discussions on agriculture-related issues will be made at cabinet meeting every week. Besides, district collectors will also invariably review only agriculture-related issues every week. Divisional commissioners will regularly review agriculture-related issues separately. Chief Minister Shri Chouhan was addressing session pertaining to “Challenges and ways to maintain agriculture growth rate” on the second day of commissioner-collector conference here today.
Organic Fertiliser Council to be constituted
Chief Minister Shri Chouhan described as important the suggestion put forth at the meeting that an Organic Fertiliser Council should be constituted for extension of organic farming in the state. Area of organic farming will be increased since it is the farming of future. He directed that special attention should be paid to maximise irrigation potential with effective use of all the available resources. Farmers should be motivated for growing three crops in a year in the areas water is available in adequate quantity. Optimum utilisation of water available for irrigation is State Government’s priority. For this, in-charge ministers should hold separate meetings in districts.
Drive to be launched to motivate for crop cycle change
Chief Minister Shri Chouhan said that attention should be paid to horticulture extension with a view to increase farmers’ income. There is immense potential in this sector. Farmers in every district should be motivated to grow horticulture and medicinal plants’ crops. Special efforts should be made to increase fish and milk production. A campaign to motivate farmers for changing crop cycle should be launched in districts. Farmers should be motivated and encouraged to adopt S.R.I. and ridge methods and to abolish spraying of seeds. Strict action should be taken on receiving complaints regarding spurious fertiliser and seeds. The State Government will formulate a strict law to prohibit sub-standard fertiliser and seed. Arrangements should made for processing of coarse cereals like kodu-kutki.
Agricultural products to be branded
Chief Minister Shri Chouhan said that sincere efforts should be made for branding of state’s major agricultural products. Special attention should be paid to restart dysfunctional lift irrigation schemes. Awareness should be created about balanced use of fertiliser through effective use of agriculture extension staff. Farmers should be motivated to lift fertiliser in advance.
Special scheme to increase productivity in command area
It was informed during the session that Madhya Pradesh’s agriculture growth rate is the highest in the country. The State achieved 9 percent agriculture growth rate during the 11th Five-Year Plan, which was highest in the country. The state has achieved this growth rate being pioneer not only in agriculture but also affiliate sectors like animal husbandry, fisheries and horticulture. State’s agriculture growth rate was 18.9 percent last year. Special efforts are afoot to increase productivity in command areas of irrigation projects. About 19 lakh hectare area was irrigated last year from projects of Water Resources and Narmada Valley Development Authority. This year, 21 lakh hectare area will be irrigated by utilising optimum capacity of canals. Irrigation through Kapil Dhara wells and field bunding etc is in addition to this figure. A profit of Rs. 300 crore has been earned by farmers this year as a result of advance storage of fertiliser. Madhya Pradesh is also pioneer in the country in milk production with 8.45 percent increase in this sector. Now, a total of 1,449 awards will be given under Gau Palan Puraskar Yojna of the Animal Husbandry Department. A campaign will be launched to free grazing grounds from encroachments. Like farmers in the state, fishermen will also be provided loans at zero percent. Credit cards have been issued to 10 thousand 801 fishermen so far in the state. Interest-free loans worth Rs. 8,500 will made available to farmers this year.
Suggestions put forth during discussions
During discussions, ministers and senior officers suggested that encroachments from grazing grounds should be removed. A scheme should be chalked out to increase number of cows of indigenous species. Cow Sanctuary should also be developed in Bundelkhand region. Subsidy should also be given on cotton. Subsidy on seed production should be increased. Arrangements should be made to ensure that farmers do not have to visit different banks to get no-objection certificates. Schemes should be chalked out for promotion and marketing of processed agricultural products. Attention should be paid to value addition and branding of agricultural products. Training should be imparted on how to grow crops on the banks of canals. Fish route should also be created like milk route. Minimum profit to farmers from agricultural products should be fixed. Efforts for increasing agricultural products should be made by organising farmers. Those who participated in discussions included Urban Administration & Development Minister Shri Babulal Gaur, Forest Minister Shri Sartaj Singh, Public Health & Housing Minister Dr. Narottam Mishra, Public Works Minister Shri Nagendra Singh, Minister of State (independent charge) for Woman & Child Development Smt. Ranjana Baghel, Minister of State for Food & Civil Supplies Shri Paras Jain, Minister of State for Farmers’ Welfare & Agriculture Development Shri Brijendra Pratap Singh, Minister of State for Urban Administration & Development Shri Manohar Untwal, Minister of State for School Education Shri Nanabhau Mohod, the Chief Secretary, Additional Chief Secretaries, Principal Secretaries, Commissioners and Collectors.