The opposition to GM crops is clearly not from farmers. Were that so, the global annual area planted under them wouldn’t have risen from a mere 1.7 million to nearly 190 million hectares between 1996 and 2017.
According to the Agriculture Ministry’s latest sowing data released Friday, the total area planted under all crops during this kharif season has been only 146.61 lakh hectares (lh), as against last year’s 162.07 lh.
The PMFBY’s operational guidelines require state governments to carry out at least four CCEs in every village panchayat for every notified crop and submit the yield data to insurance companies within a month from the date of harvest.
During 2014-15 to 2018-19, about 1.55 crore houses and 2.18 lakh km of all-weather roads were built in rural India under the Pradhan Mantri Awaas Yojana-Gramin and Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana, respectively.
While Uttar Pradesh’s sugar belt has post-Independence shifted to the western and central districts, sugar cane still retains political relevance in the four northeastern constituencies that vote in the last phase of polls on May 19.
UP is truly at the crossroads: The state is uniquely poised to leverage opportunities from agriculture and build on the base laid by entrepreneurs, whether in sugar, potatoes, buffalo meat, leather or mentha oil. But, it is equally in danger of being taken back by decades, courtesy leaders with exclusivist and narrow-minded visions.
The past couple of months have seen prices of a host of farm commodities surge, mainly on the back of drought in large parts of western and southern India, coupled with an early and harsher-than-usual summer.
"They successfully portrayed us as tax evaders and were themselves well-prepared to handle the new system. The Narendra Modi government has forced the cyclewallah, who cannot afford to employ chartered accountants, to compete with the carwallah," says Sharvan Singh.
Potato is a major crop in Agra, grown in 57,879 hectares of the district (2017-18 data) that includes both Agra and Fatehpur Sikri. The tuber is also extensively cultivated in Hathras (46,333 hectares) and Aligarh (23,332).