Millennium Post

Govt unveils 16-point action plan to double farmers' income

New Delhi: The Union Budget which was presented by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman reiterated the government's commitment to double farmers' income by 2022.

In her longest ever budget speech, the Finance Minister has focused on boosting the income of people and enhancing their purchasing power to give a boost to rural economy.

Unveiling its strategy for agriculture sector, the Finance Minister has announced 16-point action plan for farmers to meet the goal of doubling farmers' income.

As it was mentioned in Economic Survey, the FM also stressed on the need to liberalise farm markets to make farming more competitive.

Handholding of farm-based activities need to be provided, sustainable cropping patterns and more technology needed, she further said, adding that the government has allocated Rs 2.83 lakh crore for agriculture and allied activities, irrigation and rural development in 2020-21 budget.

"We will encourage state governments who implement following model laws- Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act of 2016, Model Agricultural Produce and livestock and Marketing Act of 2017 and Model Agricultural Produce and Livestock contract farming and services promotion and facilitation Act of 2018," the FM said.

Proposing comprehensive measures for 100 water-stressed districts in the country, the FM announced setting up of agricultural credit target at Rs 15 lakh crore.

"Pradhan Mantri Kisan Urja Suraksha evem Utthan Mahabhiyan (PM KUSUM) to be expanded to provide 20 lakh farmers in setting up standalone solar pumps.

Farmers who have fallow or barren land will be helped to set up solar power generation units and also sell surplus power to the solar grid and also make living out of even barren land," the FM said in her maiden Budget speech.

"We will encourage balanced use of all fertilizers. Warehouses will be set up and viability gap funding to be provided to set up warehouses," Sitharaman said.

Aiming to provide holding capacity for farmers and regaining Dhaanya Lakshmi status for women in villages, the FM has announced launch of village storage scheme that would be run by SHGs as its sixth action point.

"Indian railways will set up Kisan rail through PPP arrangement, for transportation of perishable goods," she said.

Further, Krishi UDAN will be launched by Ministry of Civil Aviation on international and national routes, improving value realisation in North East and tribal districts, she said.

The minister further said that financing on negotiable warehousing receipts to be integrated with e-National Agricultural Market.

The minister said that milk processing capacity to be doubled from 53.5 million tonne to 108 million tonne by 2025 and fish production to be raised to 200 lakh tonnes by 2022-23.

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