Modernization of agriculture
Modernisation of agriculture results from a whole galaxy of factors, that include physical input, economic, organisational, cultural, motivational and knowledge factors. While all these factors cannot be provided in one go, they trickle in slowly over a long time before they get established and stabilised.
Physical Input Factors:
- institutional arrangements,
- work animals,
- other animals,
- Tools and machinery,
- fuel and power other than animal power,
- Manual labour and skilled labour.
- Transport, storage, processing and marketing facilities.
- Facilities for the supply and distribution of inputs, including credit.
- Input prices including interest rates.
- Products prices including prices of consumer goods.
- Taxes, subsidies and quotas.
- Land tenure;
- Farm size;
- General government services and policies;
- Voluntary and statutory farmer’s organisation for; (a) Coordinating physical input use like irrigation, tractors, etc.; (b) Economic services like purchase, sale, credit, etc.; (c) Social services like education and health; (d) Diffusion of knowledge like adult education, youth clubs, etc. and; (e) Local government.
Cultural and Motivational Factors
- Integration of agricultural institutions (like practices and values) within the culture and social system of the nation;
- Public administration factors like structure and mode of operation of the bureaucracy;
- Social structure like cultural values and dynamics of peasant communities;
- Processes of socio-cultural changes like barriers and motivations in the innovative practices, functional harmony, etc.
- Technical knowledge like agronomy, plant genetics, soil science, water management, agricultural engineering, pest control, etc.;
- Economic knowledge like land economics, general economics, farm management;
- Knowledge of policies in planning and public administration;
- General educational initiatives like literacy promotion, adult education, mass communication, etc.
Farmers have been provided assistance for owning agricultural machinery including tractors. Besides this farm machines are exhausted for their characteristics and betterment. Five states agricultural universities are being aided for farm machinery testing, training and human resources development. In spite of the efforts the improvement in farm machinery use has been mainly northern states and in few areas where irrigation facilities have been developed.
Integrated Pest Management (IPM), in eco-friendly approach, was adopted as a major thrust area of crop protection during 8th plan. IPM aims at minimal use of hazardous chemical pesticides by using alternate pest control methods and technique. The surveillance for pests and diseases on economically important crop was carried out and about 1,603 million bio-agents were released.
Total net sown area in the country is about 142 million ha and out of it 92.6 million ha is rainfed. Production has wide fluctuation due to variation in rainfall as whole farming depends upon rainfall which is often erratic and unpredictable. Jowar, bajra other millets pulses, oilseeds and cotton are grown. Increase and stability in their productivity is of crucial importance. In the 8th plan holistic approach was adopted under the National Watershed Development Project for Rainfed Area (N WDPRA). It aimed at development of integrated farming system on watershed basin in shifted areas.
The NWDPRA was launched in 1990-91, with the objective of restoration of ecological balances in rainfed areas and sustainable bio-mass production. It also works for generating employment opportunities for rural manner in rainfed areas by developing self-help groups. Under this project the target is of treating 28 million ha area. The Integrated Watershed Development Project (Hills) and Integrated Watershed Development Project (Plains) are underway and their main aim is slow down and reverse degradation of natural environment and improve potential of the areas.
The Technology Mission on oilseeds provided the necessary breakthrough in oilseeds production. Oilseeds sector has now become to major foreign exchange earner. The oilseed production was doubled in decade (12.6 mt in 1987-88 to 24.4 mt 1996-97).
Time is popularly famous as Yellow Revolution. Pulses and maize were also brought under the ambit of Technology Mission. Centrally-sponsored Oilseeds Production Programme (OPP), National Pulses Development Project (NPDP), and Accelerated Maize Development Programme (AMDP) are being continued in 9th Plan also.
The production of fruits and vegetables was 38.3 and 67.24 million tonnes respectively. India attained second position in coconut production. Above 10% of coconut production is from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka. India is the worlds, leading producer and exporter of cashew accounting for nearly world’s 50% demand.
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