02 September 2021, India: The Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar said that along with climate change, there are other challenges in the agriculture sector, to deal with which the Government of India is playing its role seriously. Due to the imbalance in weather, there is either drought somewhere or flood, in view of such adverse conditions, the government is completely serious. Our scientists are working very diligently for proper seeds etc.
Union Minister Shri Tomar said this while addressing the 16th Sustainability Summit of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) as the Chief Guest today. Shri Tomar said that the Amrit Mahotsav of Independence is being celebrated in the whole country on the call of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji to mark the completion of 75 years of independence. Shri Tomar said that even in the times of COVID crisis, India on its part has extended all possible cooperation to other countries. On the call of the Prime Minister, the campaign of vaccination is also in full swing in the country, and it is a matter of satisfaction that so far that 66 crore doses have been administered. Even during the COVID crisis, the farmers of India have worked hard, and there was a bumper production. India being an agricultural country, the agriculture sector has contributed significantly to the GDP. Shri Tomar said that under the important scheme of Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi, so far about one lakh fifty-seven thousand crore rupees have been deposited in the bank accounts of more than 11 crore farmers of the country.
He said that the Prime Minister has started the Production Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, which will prove beneficial for other industries including food processing. To make agriculture profitable for small and medium farmers, infrastructure is being developed near the farms as part of the concrete steps of the government. In this regard, Agriculture Infrastructure Fund of one lakh crore rupees has been created, through which projects are being sanctioned. Projects worth more 4000 crores have been approved. 10,000 Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) will be formed in the country under the new scheme of the Center, the work of which has started. This will help the farmers a lot in terms of getting better markets, and increase in incomes. It is a matter of pride for the country that we have joined the top ten in the world in terms of agricultural exports, and we want to do better. For the benefit of the farmers, the agriculture sector is being connected with state-of-the-art technology. Along with more than seventy Kisan Rails in the country, farmers are also being benefited through the Udaan Yojana.
Shri Tomar said that the Central Government, which is determined towards the upliftment of the farmers, has brought the Agriculture Reform Act, which is going to bring about a radical change in the field of agriculture. With new agricultural laws, the whole country will be an open market for farmers. In view of this, the private sector can also now invest in modern agri-business platforms, set up post-harvest facilities like godowns, cold storages, etc. This will pave the way for better facilities for the farmers at lower charges and very important for the development of agriculture sector. These reforms have created substantial investment opportunities and have tried to bridge the gaps.
Shri Tomar said that India has a very good relationship with Denmark and it has been the constant endeavour of P M Shri Modi ji that both the countries use knowledge and technology for each other.
Ms Lea Wermelin, Minister of Environment, Government of Denmark, in her keynote address, said that India and Denmark have begun a new era in the form of a far reaching “Green Strategic Partnership” that will give the country a special place in delivering sustainable solutions to India. Highlighting the recently launched agreement between India and Denmark in September 2020, Ms Wermelin expressed that the high-level visits and discussions between the two nations are showing opportunities for mutual collaborations and benefits in the area of green growth and finance. Quoting Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, she said that “Denmark has the skills, India has the scale.”
She also mentioned that in the area of providing drinking water to all households in a sustainable manner, especially catering to SDG 6, there is a partnership between Denmark and India-the Indo-Danish Water Tech Alliance.
Bringing to light the critical need of addressing sustainability challenges for a resilient future, Mr Sanjiv Puri, Chairman and Managing Director, ITC Limited, and Chairman, Advisory Council of CII-ITC Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development, stated that “climate crisis is not in the future, it is here right now and an urgent, purposive as well as large-scale action is required immediately. Corporations, as large organs of society, can play a leadership role and our responsibility is to find solutions”.
He also said that, as witnessed during the pandemic, there was quick action within a year to develop multiple vaccines where the power of science and technology was evidenced. Climate crisis also needs to be addressed in the same way.
Mr Chandrajit Banerjee, Director General, Confederation of Indian Industry, in his opening remarks, said that the Indian Industry has shown its mettle in adapting and reconfiguring in a severe crisis situation. A competitive and sustainable industry must now assume a lead role in India’s future development as well as play a key role in the emerging shape of the global economy.
The Sustainability Summit is the annual flagship event of the Confederation of Indian Industry in sustainability, launched in 2006 to raise the bar of dialogue, practice and performance of sustainable business. The ‘16th Sustainability Summit – Building a Resilient Future: Leveraging Science, Technology and Finance is designed to build discussions on the importance of green finance, science and technological innovations that will step up actions for a green and inclusive recovery.