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Lesson-1 Kurukshetra Summary
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Dr Swasti Sinha
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  3. Agriculture for Rural Transformation NSSO data highlights that more than 92% households in rural areas have agriculture as these major activity for income generation. . The farming and livestock rearing together provide about 67.2% of the income of the agricultural households. About 60% of the income per month is received from cultivation and farming followed by 32% from wages. Due to high dependency of rural population on agriculture, agricultural development is central to all strategies of rural development.

  4. Issues with earlier approach: Dominated by food security concerns, the policies in past were more centric to green revolution technologies and regions leaving behind sizeable geographies, which are water stressed Huge regional disparities were also observed in seed, fertilizer and marketing services and infrastructure and the post-harvest infrastructure.

  5. Government Initiatives: A. Higher Investment for Inclusive Development . The public spending in agriculture and allied sectors has increased significantly by Central Government during 2014 to 2018. . The sizeable increase has been effected in livestock sector to raise the income of farmers. .Food processing is recognized as an employment intensive priority sector in the New Manufacturing policy in 2011.The specific incentives to producers and entrepreneurs are put in place through PM SAMPADA scheme of Ministry of Food Processing industries

  6. Long Term Irrigation Fund was established in NABARD in 2015-16 which was further augmented Food Processing Fund of Rs. 2000 crore in NABARD for extending affordable credit to designated food parks and the individual food processing units in the designated food parks. Micro Irrigation Fund in NABARD to achieve the goal 'Per Drop More Crop' Dairy Processing and Infrastructure Development Fund in NABARD. Fisheries & Aquaculture Infrastructure Development Fund (FAIDF) and Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund (AHIDF) for financing infrastructure requirement of fisheries animal husbandry sector.

  7. B. Making Natural Resources More productive and Rewarding Land and water, due to depletion and deterioration, has become the limiting factors for agri based activities. The availability of land per household is 1.16 ha and water at 1544 m3 per capita per annum. For increasing the operational holdings, NITI Aayog suggested a Model Act on Agricultural Land Leasing. This will promote land leasing for optimum land use and occupational diversification. There exists a strong inverse relationship of rural poverty with irrigation expansion. Bringing irrigation to a rainfed land increases the productivity by 2.5 times. . During 2001-2012, the net irrigated area increased by about 11.4 million ha, dominated by tube wells and other sources (63.6%). The surface water irrigation has not yielded much in irrigation utilization out of the irrigation potential created. To rectify this, the Government undertook an initiative to bring convergence within the water sector through Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana (PMKSY)

  8. .The PMKSY aims at end-to-end solution in irrigation supply chain from source to farm level applications. Their irrigation potential of 8.06 million ha has been targeted by 2020. .The convergence with MGREGA has been envisaged to create about 5 lakh farm ponds annually. The micro-irrigation is the core focus to achieve per drop more crop. PMKSY-microirrigation has explicit focus on tools and techniques leading to protective irrigating and higher on-farm water use efficiency .As a result of diversified agriculture through micro irrigation the income increased 69 percent to as highs 348 per cent (Rs 1.0 lakh to 1.5 lakh per acre) over traditional cropping. The benefit has spread over 13 states in varied agro-climatic zones. The phenomenal growth in return to farmers due to irrigation has evidenced the strongest impact that PMKSY-micro-irrigation is likely to make on rural economy.

  9. C. Raising Farm Productivity to Boost Income of Rural Households: .Seed and fertilizers have been central to augmenting productivity Government established 125 seed hubs in leading state Agricultural Universities and ICAR Institutes. .Soil health card scheme is operational to economize the fertilizer use. It helps farmers know the fertility status of his farm and get crop specific prescription for the right mix of fertilizers and manure. It results into balanced saving on his costs and also improve the soil health. Neem coating has been introduced to reduce the leakage in urea distribution and enhance on-farm use efficiency and cut the cost of cultivation. DBT in fertilizers linked with Aadhaar enabled soil health cards is to promote balanced use of nutrients and also bring in transparency in fertilizers distribution and sale.

  10. .The present level of farm power usage is 1.84 kw/ha has to be raised to 2.2 kw/ha by 2020. Farm productivity and farm power availability are strongly correlated as highly mechanized states such as Punjab and Haryana have very high productivity as compared to other States with low mechanization Promotion of Custom Hiring Centre (CHC) for agricultural machinery is being implemented under National Mission for Agricultural Extension & Technology The crop residue management in NCT region has been given top priority through a new scheme to manage the crop residue at farmer's fields through farm mechanization.

  11. D. Relieving the Rural Households from Risk The Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) has been launched in January 2016 by subsuming multiple insurance schemes like National Agricultural Insurance Scheme, Modified NAIS, etc. to cover the risk in the rural areas. . It has been made more inclusive with a meagre premium of only 1.5 to 2.0 % for arable cropping and 5% of the sum insured for fruits, vegetables and plantation crops.

  12. G. Rural Infrastructure Development Rural Development is constrained by poor infrastructure as evidenced from rural road density, access to irrigation, power supply, market facility and network, godown, cold storages, cold chain ad processing infrastructure. The primary space of marketing in market yards. On an average one market yard is distributed about 463 sq km (12 km radius) against the desirable level of one at every 80 sq km ( 5 km radius). The disparity is vast amongst states. One wholesale market at every 6 km radius exists in Punjatb against one at 45 km radius in Assam. The farm mechanization is also very low at 1.84 kw/ha against 2.2 kw/ha envisaged by the experts.

  13. .The out-of-mandi transactions and exemption of market fee on horticultural perishables along with the electronic marketing etc. have been explicitly dealt in this Model Act. Government has launched a model act on contract farming to facilitate the States to enact the contract farming acts for protecting the interests of producers and the buyers (sponsors). National Agricultural Market (e-NAM) was launched on 15th April 2016. It is aimed at ushering in much needed agriculture marketing reforms to enable farmers to get better price of their produce.

  14. Promoting Livelihood Through NRLM National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) is promoting community based organisations (CBOs) as the corner-stone of its strategy for addressing the goal of poverty eradication .CBOs has been defined as collectives having formal or informal structure working on democratic basis to address relevant social and economic needs of their members who exercise full or significant control and ownership over these collectives. NRLM has set for itself a target to mobilize nine crore poor households spread across all the villages in the country.

  15. Strategies Adopted by NRLM (i) Building dedicated support structure at various levels to mobilize poor and augment their capacities; (ii) Saturation of poor in a phased way to include each and every poor household under the fold of SHGs; (iii) Arrange linkages to CBOs to emerge as viable units providing services for livelihood generation; and (iv) Encouraging participation of members in all decision- making processes.

  16. Functions of CBOs: Financial Services savings, credit and insurance are the key services being accessed by the members. Regular savings on weekly or monthly basis has become an integral part of SHGs. SHGs arrive at their own norms about internal loans and often charge 2 per cent per month interest rate. The second type of loan service being pursued by SHGs is enabling members' access to external loans from federations or banks. However, issues like delay and reduction in release of CIF have been observed. . Bank Linkage- Bank linkage to access larger capital has emerged as the prominent activity of the SHGs and their federations. .The SHGs have accessed on an average Rs. 1.22 lakh worth loan with a savings to credit ratio of 1:6.7. The macro picture though impressive, the study revealed considerable variations across states.

  17. Sustainability of CBOs: The sustainability of CBOs is a multi-dimensional goal of attaining self-reliance, autonomy and role clarity The formation of federations at various levels has been found to be top-down and issues concerning their need and viability have not been addressed adequately. Many CBOs are still informal and work under the guidance of the mission management units. Autonomy and sustained capacity building becomes necessary As regards higher level federations like VOs and CLFs, the study revealed that the challenges are even more acute. Their legal status is yet be clearly clarified as they have remained informal though some states have initiated steps to ensure legal compliances. Ensuring minimum threshold size becomes crucial for attaining viability. Role Clarity has to emerge with regard to both the VOs/CLFs as they are mainly into support and convergence activities. Until at least one of the units in the structure takes up some significant activity to ensure revenue flows, the long term sustainability would remain a challenge.

  18. Past Initiatives & their Impact: .Some of the major steps taken by the Government include nationalization of Banks during 1969 & 1980. The nationalization of banks was coupled with introduction of priority sector norms, where in commercial banks were advised to lend a certain percentage (40% now) of their lendable resources to 'identified' sectors, which included agriculture, micro and small industry and various other sectors requiring priority in credit assistance The next important step was the introduction of area approach, through Lead Bank scheme in 1969, for development of an adequate banking and credit structure in rural areas. Further, Regional Rural Banks were established during 1976, with the objective of reaching the 'target' groups and this led to professional approach in extending credit to rural areas.

  19. .Service Area Approach (SAA)was introduced in 1989 for planned and orderly development of rural and semi urban areas through allotment of identified villages (15- 25) to a branch for taking care of financial needs of the population in these villages. The SAA has since been rationalized for coverage of government sponsored schemes only, giving the people a large choice of banks to approach to meet their financial needs. The important FI initiative was mainstreaming of Self Help Groups (SHG) through an effective bank linkage program (SHG-BLP). Started in 1992, the program provided credit without collaterals to poor. This program has been recognized as the largest microfinance program in the world. As a result, the reach of the formal financial system improved in the rural areas and the access to credit for the disadvantaged section increased

  20. The pension scheme (APY) encouraged workers (in the age group of 18-40 years) in unorganized sector to save for their retirement. Based on monthly contribution of a set amount to National Pension System (NPS), which will be debited directly from the account, the subscriber is guaranteed a monthly pension between Rs. 1000 and Rs. 5000 released to the account, from the age of 60 years

  21. Women utilized the accounts better than their male counterparts. Demonetization increased utilization of various financial services overcoming longstanding demographic and gender barriers The improved utilization was possible due to integration of Jan Dhan accounts with Aadhar numbers. The distribution of pension, welfare and subsidy related payments through these accounts, as part of direct benefit transfer (DBT), helped in door step delivery of financial services to the rural populations. Further, the issue of RuPay cards (a domestic debit card with accidental insurance coverage) to PMJDY account holders, was another feature which helped in better use of the PMJDY accounts .The other notable observation is the element of Risk Mitigation through PMJDY accounts, as is linked to three social security schemes. The awareness on insurance as a risk mitigation tool among the rural people improved in the last four years.

  22. Inclusion of more crops under Market Intervention Scheme All the agricultural and horticultural commodities for which Minimum Support Price (MSP) are not fixed and are generally perishable in nature are covered under Market Intervention Scheme (MIS)

  23. MGNREGS: Empowering Rural India The Mahatma Gandhi National Rural employment Guarantee Scheme - the flagship programme of the government aims at enhancing livelihood security of rural poor by providing at least one hundred days of guaranteed wage employment in every financial year to every household whose adult members volunteer to do unskilled manual work. A study by the National Council of Applied Economic Research found that the MGNREGS has reduced poverty overall by up to 32 per cent and has prevented 14 million people from falling into poverty. It is hailed as a tool of empowerment for the most vulnerable sections of the village communities as they are also victims of social exclusion and political marginalization.

  24. It played a role in the acceleration in wage rate growth through upward pressure on wages and tightening of the supply of casual labour to the market and indirectly also through the pressure on the state governments to increase minimum wages. However, efforts should be made so that part of the funds are utilized on enhancing skills at the village level. A stipend-based apprenticeship may be adopted to ensure skill enhancement because this empowers people and prepares them for jobs to conform to new technologies

  25. Health Education Infrastructure: The health education and training infrastructure in India has also grown over a period of time. . In addition to graduate courses, there are post-graduate (PG) seats of MD/MS and in AYUSH stream also. .To increase availability of various types of human resources at government health facilities, the intake capacity of graduate courses (doctors), Post graduate courses (specialists) and other cadres of health care is being augmented In parallel, there is focus on setting up new medical colleges and institutions such as All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIMS).

  26. Considering that, a health team with appropriate mix is needed, due to shortfall of staff, public health facilities are yet to realise their full potential Besides qualified private service providers, a larger number of unqualified non-degree allopathic practitioners (NDAP) practice allopathic medicine in India and are the only caregivers available to rural and poor people.

  27. SPMRM Bridging Rural-Urban Divide .In recent times there has been a shift in the character of geographical location of villages and towns. Large parts of rural areas in the country are no longer stand-alone settlements but mostly a part of a cluster of settlements, which are relatively close to each other. These clusters show potential for growth, are capable of exposing economic opportunities to gain from locational and competitive advantage.

  28. (a) Migration More people migrate from less affluent states and districts. According to the Economic Survey 17, 8 to 9 million people migrate for work opportunities within India annually. .By 2050, it is estimated that more than half of India will be living in urban India. (b) Small holdings .The average farm size in India is small (1.15 ha). The small and marginal land holdings (less than 2.0 ha) account for 72 per cent of land holdings. .Fragmented holdings is an issue which makes it difficult for financial inclusion

  29. (d) Increase in Urban Population: .Achieving the sustainability of cities entails integration of four pillars-social development, economic development, environmental management, and effective urban governance. According to the UN World Cities Report 2016, by 2030, India is expected to be home to seven mega-cities with population above 10 million .According to Census 2011, 377.1 million Indians comprising 31.16 per cent of the country's population live in urban areas. Many Indian cities are now struggling with problems of poverty, inadequate provision of urban services, congestion, air pollution, sizeable slum population, affordable housing, and public transport.

  30. Shyama Prasad Mukerjee National Rurban Mission: . In this context, the Indian government has introduced the Shyama Prasad Mukherji Rurban Mission (SPMRM). It is aimed at developing rural areas which are connected to urban areas and have potential to grow if they can be served by the advanced infrastructure of the proximate cities .It is an attempt to make our rural areas socially, economically and physically sustainable regions. The Mission aims at developing 300 Rurban clusters, in the next five years.

  31. Objectives of the programme are: i. Bridge the rural urban divide- economic technological and those related to facilities and services 11. Spreading development in the region ii. Attracting investment in the rural areas iv. Stimulating local economic development with emphasis on reduction of poverty and unemployment in rural areas.

  32. It has evolved from being restricted to catering to local demand by having market Yards within the range of farms to one which now aims to have interconnectivity between markets of other States to have value dispersion between farms and consumers. Electric National Agriculture Market (eNAM) is envisioned as a unified national electronic market bringing Inter-connectivity to markers across the country. .eNAM for agriculture marketing can be regarded as technology which will brings a social change in markets. eNAM aims for integration of marketing process and flow of goods to be achieved by bringing interconnectivity of markets through information technology.

  33. . The "National Commission on Farmers" under the chairmanship of Dr. M.S. Swaminathan had recommended harnessing the benefits of digital technology for improving the socio-economic status of rural people by suggesting the establishment of "Rural Knowledge Centres" all over the country using modern Digital technology tools. The role of Digital technology to enhance food security and support rural livelihoods is increasingly recognized and was officially endorsed at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) 2003-2005

  34. .Query Redressal Services: This empowers the farmer community through effective, need-based interventions. Kisan Call Centres: The sole objective is to make agriculture knowledge available at free of cost to the farmers as and when desired. Queries related to agriculture and allied sectors are being addressed through the Kisan Call Centres in the local language. e-Sagu: It aims to improve farm productivity by delivering high quality personalized (farm-specific) agro-expert advice in a timely manner to each farm at the farmers doorstep without farmer asking a questions .AKSHGANGA: It was established at a time when information technology was almost unknown in the villages of India.