Cabinet decisions: Govt aims to woo farmers with agriculture schemes

Union cabinet announces a comprehensive package of innovative schemes for farmers, amounting to a total outlay of more than ₹370 crores

| Updated: 28 June, 2023 11:19 pm IST
Union I&B minister Anurag Thakur

NEW DELHI: The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, made significant decisions on Wednesday, encompassing various sectors.

One of the key resolutions was the approval of a new scheme aimed at promoting alternative fertilisers to reduce reliance on chemical fertilisers. Additionally, the Cabinet announced the establishment of a national organization to strengthen the country’s research capabilities.

During the meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA), the resolutions were passed, along with a comprehensive package of innovative schemes for farmers, amounting to a total outlay of ₹3,70,128.7 crore. These measures reflect the government’s commitment to bolstering the agricultural sector.

To support sugarcane growers, the Cabinet increased the Fair and Remunerative Price (FRP) by ₹10 to ₹315 per quintal for the upcoming 2023-24 season starting in October. Moreover, the government decided that there would be no deduction for sugar mills with a recovery rate below 9.5 per cent. This move ensures that farmers receive a minimum price of ₹291.975 per quintal, compared to ₹282.125 per quintal in the current season.

Union Minister Anurag Thakur highlighted PM Modi’s unwavering support for farmers and agriculture, affirming that the government has consistently prioritised their welfare.

In a significant development, the government decided to introduce the National Research Foundation (NRF) Bill in Parliament.

The NRF will serve as an apex body to provide strategic direction for scientific research in India. It will foster a culture of research and innovation across universities, colleges, research institutions, and R&D laboratories.

The NRF’s governing board, headed by the Prime Minister, will comprise renowned researchers and professionals.

The Cabinet also approved the ‘PM Programme for Restoration, Awareness Generation, Nourishment and Amelioration of Mother-Earth’ (PM-PRANAM). This initiative aims to incentivise states to promote alternative fertilizers and reduce reliance on chemical fertilisers.

Sustainable agriculture remains a key focus area, and the government has committed a substantial package of ₹3,68,676.7 crore for urea subsidy over the next three years. Furthermore, efforts will be made to establish and revive six urea production units to achieve self-sufficiency in urea production by 2025-26.

Another significant decision taken by the Cabinet was the ratification of the Headquarters Agreement (HQA) between the Government of India and the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure (CDRI).

The CDRI, launched by PM Modi in 2019, is a global partnership aimed at promoting sustainable development. Ratifying the HQA will grant CDRI independent and international legal status, facilitating its functions and enabling it to carry out its mission more effectively.

With a focus on the welfare of farmers and the overall growth of the nation, the Union Cabinet’s initiatives aim to create a brighter future for India’s agricultural and scientific landscape.

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