Narendra Modi says govt doubled budget for agriculture sector to Rs 2.12 lakh crore in last four years
unprecedented" work in the agriculture sector, including doubling of the budget to Rs 2.12 lakh crore.
Modi also reiterated that his government is working to double farm income by 2022.
Continuing his outreach programme of direct interaction with beneficiaries of his pet schemes, Modi spoke to farmers from over 600 districts via video-conferencing, highlighting the government interventions right from seeds to market that is aimed at addressing farm distress.
The government, through an extensive and balanced policy, is aiming to provide inputs like quality seeds, fertilisers, water and electricity as well as markets for increasing farmers' income, he said.
"We have decided to double farmers income by 2022... When I talked about doubling of farmers income, there were many people who made fun that this is not possible and difficult. They created an atmosphere of doom. But we decided as I had full faith in farmers," Modi said.
To achieve this target, he said the four cornerstones of the government policy are cutting input cost, fair price for the crop, preventing post-harvest losses and creating alternative sources of income.
File image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. AP.File image of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. AP.
Modi said in the Budget for 2018-19 fiscal, the government announced that the minimum support price (MSP) for all crops will be fixed at least 1.5 times the cost of production. He also listed out all the costs that will be included while fixing the MSP.
"The budget allocation for the agriculture sector in 5 years of the previous government was Rs 1.21 lakh crore. This has been increased to Rs 2.12 lakh crore during 2014-19, which is almost double. This clearly reflects our commitment to farmers welfare," Modi said.
Stating that there has been "unprecedented development" in the farm sector during the last four years, the prime minister highlighted that foodgrains production in the country touched an all-time high of 280 million tonnes during 2017-18 crop year as against an average production of 250 million tonnes during 2010-14.