NITI Aayog member (Agriculture) Ramesh Chand said, “The infection has spread in rural areas in May, at that time the activities related to agriculture are very less.
NITI Aayog member (Agriculture) Ramesh Chand believes that the second wave of COVID-19 (COVID-19) will not have any adverse effect on the agriculture sector of the country. He said that the infection has spread in rural areas in May, at that time there is very little activity related to agriculture. Chand said India’s policy on subsidies, prices and technology is heavily tilted in favor of rice, wheat and sugarcane. He emphasized that policies on procurement and Minimum Support Price (MSP) in the country should be made in favor of pulses.
The member of NITI Aayog said, COVID-19 infection started spreading in rural areas in May. Agricultural activities remain very limited in May. Especially activities related to agricultural land. He said that no crop is sown and harvested in May. Only a few vegetables and off-season crops are cultivated.
Chand said agricultural activities are at their peak by the month of March or mid-April. After that they decrease. These activities again gain momentum with the arrival of monsoon. He said that in such a situation, even if the availability of labor remains low from the middle of May to June, then it will not affect the agriculture sector.
Why India could not become self-reliant in pulses production?
Asked why India has not yet become self-sufficient in pulses production, Chand said there is a need to increase the area under irrigation. This will bring a lot of change on the production and price stability front.
In India, our subsidy policy, price policy and technology policy are heavily tilted in favor of rice and wheat and sugarcane, he said. In such a situation, I believe that we need to make our procurement and Minimum Support Price (MSP) policy friendly to pulses.
Regarding the growth of the agriculture sector, Chand said that the growth rate of the sector will be more than 3 percent in 2021-22. The growth rate of the agriculture sector in the last financial year was 3.6 percent. At the same time, there was a decline of 7.3 percent in the Indian economy.
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