India Region

Haryana’s Agricultural Renaissance: A Symphony of Farmer Empowerment

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29 November 2023, Chandigarh: The agricultural landscape of Haryana is undergoing a transformative renaissance under the leadership of Chief Minister Manohar Lal. His multifaceted approach is not merely about cultivating crops; it’s a holistic commitment to empower farmers, ensure fair prices, and promote sustainable farming practices.

Gone are the days when farmers had to endure prolonged waits in mandis. Haryana stands tall as the first state to implement the purchase of 14 crops on Minimum Support Price (MSP). This strategic move not only alleviates the struggles of farmers but also sets a precedent for agricultural policies across the nation.

The sweet success of the government’s endeavours is most evident in the sugarcane fields. Recognizing the pivotal role of sugarcane farmers, the government has elevated prices per quintal to the highest in the country, from 372 to 386. Furthermore, a forward-thinking announcement of a future price of Rs. 400 per quintal promises economic resilience for those toiling in sugarcane cultivation.

Furthermore, it is the Manohar government that has leveraged technology to benefit farmers through initiatives like the ‘Meri Fasal Mera Byora’ portal. Over the last seven seasons, a staggering Rs. 85,000 crore has been seamlessly deposited into the accounts of 12 lakh farmers, ensuring a direct and efficient financial lifeline. Besides this, the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana has added an additional layer of security, with 29.45 lakh farmers benefiting from claims amounting to Rs. 7,656 crore.

Rs. 118 crore spent on Water Conservation

The state’s commitment to water-saving practices and sustainable agriculture is evident through initiatives like the ‘Mera Pani-Meri Virasat’ scheme that encourages farmers to shift from water-intensive rice cultivation to alternative crops. With financial incentives totalling Rs. 118 crores to farmers at a rate of Rs. 7,000 per acre, this initiative not only conserves water but also enriches the agricultural tapestry with diverse crops. Under this visionary scheme, a staggering 1,74,464 acres once dedicated to traditional rice cultivation have witnessed a paradigm shift. Instead, farmers are increasingly adopting alternative crops and actively promoting water conservation in their agricultural practices.

A crucial component of this agricultural transformation is the ‘Bhavantar Bharpai Yojana’, incentivizing the cultivation of millet. Farmers reaping the benefits of this scheme find themselves credited with Rs. 836 crore in their accounts, a testament to the government’s dedication to diversifying crops and bolstering local economies.

Manohar Sarkar’s efforts to nurture the roots of organic farming

In a bid to embrace sustainability at its core, the government is nurturing the roots of organic farming. Subsidies provided to 11,043 farmers echo a commitment to natural practices, with specialized Natural Farming Training Centers established in strategic locations such as Gurukul Kurukshetra, Hameti (Jind), Mangiana (Sirsa), and Gharaunda. The state is not merely advocating change but actively supporting farmers through education and resources.

Crop Residue Management for Agricultural Sustainability

Recognizing the environmental challenges posed by stubble burning, the Haryana government has instituted a robust plan for stubble management. Acknowledging the financial burden on farmers, a grant of Rs. 1000 per acre is extended to cover the expenses associated with responsible crop residue management. The result has been a tangible reduction in stubble burning, a crucial step in curbing air pollution and safeguarding public health.

Beyond the Fields

Beyond crop diversification, the Manohar Lal-led government is championing farmer welfare on multiple fronts. The Atal Kisan Majdoor Canteen Scheme offers affordable meals at Rs. 10 per plate in 25 mandis, ensuring that those who feed the nation are well-nourished themselves. Integration of 108 mandis with the National Agriculture Market Portal (E-NAM) streamlines operations and opens new avenues for farmers.

The establishment of farmer markets in Panchkula, Sector-20, and Gurugram further fortifies the government’s commitment to creating accessible avenues for farmers to sell their produce directly to consumers. This not only empowers farmers but also fosters a sense of community and self-sufficiency.

Haryana’s agricultural narrative under Chief Minister Manohar Lal’s leadership is a story of resilience, empowerment, and sustainability. Notably, the present state government’s commitment to sustainable agriculture is not just about conserving water or diversifying crops; it’s about sowing the seeds of a future where agriculture thrives in harmony with nature, and farmers reap the benefits of their hard work, today and for generations to come.

Also Read: CO2-free hydrogen: BASF receives funding approval for 54-megawatt water electrolysis plant

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