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Union Agricultural Minister lists the steps taken by Modi government towards welfare of farmers

Radha Mohan Singh stated that the government was supporting horticulture, livestock and bamboo to increase farmers' income. Bee production centers have come up in 15 regions, he said. Furthermore, marine products are being aggressively sold in overseas markets and their sale has gone up by 95%.

Speaking at the round table organised by a media house, Union Minister of Agriculture, Radha Mohan Singh elaborated on the achievements of the NDA government and the steps that had been taken to improve the affairs of the agricultural sector.

Singh began by praising the late Atal Bihari Vajpayee for his contribution to rural areas. He said, “Had Vajpayee not been there, there wouldn’t have been rural roads.” He asserted that the former Prime Minister of India’s initiative to link villages to the rest of the country was crucial to improving the lives of farmers.

The Agricultural Minister also attacked the UPA government for failing to implement the recommendations of the Swaminathan committee. He said the recommendations were implemented post-2014 when the NDA came to power.

Singh also mentioned Swaminathan’s endorsement of the Modi government. The agricultural scientist had heaped praises on the NDA government and remarked that it had implemented several recommendations he had made earlier as Chairman of National Commission on Farmers while the earlier government only offered lip-service.

Singh also remarked that there were only 54 soil testing labs earlier. Now, there are over 10,000 to check the health of the soil.

The National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED), the Minister claimed, was on the verge of shutting down when Narendra Modi became the Prime Minister. But since then, it has purchased 6 million tonnes of pulses and oilseeds.

Singh also stated that the government was supporting horticulture, livestock and bamboo to increase farmers’ income. Bee production centres have come up in 15 regions, he said. Furthermore, marine products are being aggressively sold in overseas markets and their sale has gone up by 95%.

The Minister further stated in the five budgets of the last five years of the UPA regime, Rs. 1,2 trillion had been allocated for agriculture while the Modi government had allocated Rs. 2.11 trillion for the same. A Dairy Welfare Fund of Rs. 10,000 crore has also been set up.

Singh reaffirmed the government’s commitment toward doubling farmers’ income. “We are proud that with the policies of the government, time-bound implementation, budgetary provisions for 2018 and hike in MSP given to farmers will put India among the leading economies in the agriculture sector and help the government’s efforts in doubling the income of farmers,” he stated.

Recently, Minister of Commerce and Industries, Suresh Prabhu had also announced that the UAE and Saudi Arabia had decided to use India to address their food security concerns and that the two countries were looking to invest in the agricultural sector in India. He had further stated that the NDA government has removed restrictions on organic and processed products which will benefit Indian farmers who are looking for a higher price for their products.

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