Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Rural Development, Panchayat Raj and Food Processing Industries, addressed the Annual General Meeting of the Tractor and Farm Mechanization Association under the Chairmanship of T R Kesavan, President TMA. The Hon’ble Minister was invited as the Chief Guest. He addressed on the issues of Farm Mechanization which is one of the key drivers for AtmaNirbhar Krishi. The Minister talked about the target of the Government of India to double farm mechanization per hectare in 10 years. The Hon’ble Minister said that it is only possible with the support from Industry.
The Government of India’s emphasis, the Minister said is on providing large advanced agricultural equipment to the farmers for their fields. He urged the members of the association to provide small utility machines to small acreage farmers, so that 86 percent of these farmers can acquire machines easily and their income can increase.
Mr Kesavan, President TMA, also mentioned that the members of the association have always readily supported all Government initiatives and congratulated the Ministry of Agriculture on proactively ensuring the revival of the agri sector and the economic well-being of the farming community. Mr Kesavan mentioned regarding the Dynamic Farm Bills, Free trade of farm produce within the country which is a huge step towards PMs vision of “One India”, One market’. He thanked the Minister for the momentum that was maintained in the early days of the pandemic by the Ministry of Agriculture and stated that this was the sole reason for the growth of the agri sector in the country
Shri Tomar mentioned that on the call of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, there has been an atmosphere of enthusiasm in the country towards Vocal for Local. Hon’ble Minister was happy to note that Farm Mechanization companies are already engaged in local production. Given that 95% of machines are being made in our country, the Minister warmly congratulated all the entrepreneurs and related corporates for this feat.
Shri Tomar hoped that exports would increase, and the situation would be much better in two to three years and self-sufficient India would become a reality in farm mechanization. The Minister informed that the scheme of Sub-Mission on Agricultural Mechanization (SMAM) has been implemented in all the states, so that they can promote the use of agricultural mechanization and increase the ratio of agricultural farm power.
The Minister said that the objective of the Government is to increase the reach of agricultural mechanization to small and marginal farmers, while promoting efforts to improve the economy by encouraging custom hiring centers creating hubs for high-tech and high-value agricultural equipment, creating awareness among stakeholders and capacity building etc. Farm mechanization is also being implemented through missions / schemes like RKVY, MIDH, NMOOP and SMAM.
As mentioned by the Minister, through this scheme, the government is also emphasizing on providing expensive and advanced agricultural equipment to the farmers' fields on rent. There is a provision of up to 40% subsidy in the project cost to the individual farmer, while the group of farmers has the facility of subsidy up to 80 percent in the project, the maximum amount of which is Rs 10 lakh. Subsidy up to 95% of the project cost is provided for the farmers of the North-Eastern region.
The multilingual mobile app "CHC-Farm Machinery" has also been launched, which helps farmers obtain farm machinery and equipment on rent through custom hiring service centres. Simplified Kisan Credit Card Scheme has been converted into ATM-like RuPay Debit Card. With a view to ensure availability of agricultural loans at a low interest rate of 7%, farmers will get Rs 3 lakh.
Shri Tomar informed that the crop residue management scheme was started from the year 2018 by the Union Ministry of Agriculture, in which machinery is provided to the farmers to prevent burning of straw. Subsidies are also provided to farmers for purchase of machinery through a custom hiring centre.
The Minister said that attention should be paid to reach the Farm-gate and raise facilities at the regional level according to diverse climatic conditions. The use of advanced agricultural equipment has the potential to increase productivity up to 30 percent and reduce the cost of farming by 20 percent. The Prime Minister has emphasized on making agriculture self-sufficient, so that through this, the country can move forward on a new path of progress. Farm mechanization is an important part of the agriculture sector and entrepreneurs must mobilize in this direction to be completely self-reliant.
The Union Minister said that in order to make the farming sector more powerful, Rs 1 lakh crore has been allocated under the self-sufficient India campaign. With the introduction of the Agricultural Infrastructure Fund, the target is to raise all facilities through village-to-village private investment. The fund has been provisioned free of cost by the government, so that these areas prosper and the standard of living of the farmers can rise.
A scheme to create 10 thousand FPOs has also been started, for which Rs 6,850 crore is allocated. Historical reforms related to agriculture have also been carried out, which have been long awaited. Our Annadata siblings are now legally independent, which will increase their income and reduce their suffering.
During the course of his address, the Hon’ble Minister assure the Industry members with support regarding “testing of tractors” and “delay in payment of subsidies by the States some of which have been stuck since the last three years”.
21 December 2020