India Needs a Systematic Transformation in Agriculture
Agriculture is the backbone of the Indian economy. By now India has come to an important landmark where Indian agriculture needs a change to proceed well in the future. Over the past years, there were conversations on rural poverty, low farmer income, farmer suicides, food security, nutritional security, and environmental pollution. Agriculture was one major concern for all these cases. And climate change has become a critical factor for Indian agriculture. With the climate change, we have to perform our farming practices in an efficient and effective manner.
The quality of the Indian agriculture system is becoming lower and lower. So it has reached a point where a transformation is needed. This transformation should be a systematic transformation.
Agricultural Transformation Systematic
In a systematic transformation, the changes should be fundamental and those changes should affect how the whole agriculture system functions. This systematic change in agriculture can’t be achieved through an unsustainable way. Transformation should be done a sustainable manner to survive further.
As a country, we have to achieve SDG goals for a better future. No poverty, quality education (farmer extension), Gender equality, Clean water and sanitation, Decent work and economic growth, Responsible consumption and production, Climate action, and Life on land are related to agriculture directly or indirectly. So “better agriculture makes a better country” must be the slogan of everybody who is looking for sustainable future agriculture.
What aspects should be transformed in India?
Food Security/Nutritional Security
Food insecurity has become one of the most pressing matters in India by now. Day by day the number of food-insecure people is increasing rapidly. As records, India accounts for 22% of the global burden of food insecurity. Although India is an agriculture-based country, it ranks as the highest food insecure country. What a shame. Lack of proper post-harvest technologies, lack of proper storage facilities, lack of cold chain facilities, Lack of proper food distribution system, lack of inter-sectorial coordination, etc. are the prominent causes for food insecurity in India. To get rid of this, there should be a proper package of systematic solutions. So that is where transformation should be taken place. All kind of resources utilization in agriculture should be optimized.
Day by day, the population is increasing in the world. When it comes to India, its population equals 17.1% of the total world population while claiming for the 2nd largest population in the world. The whole population has to be fed. With this food production system it will not be an easy task. There should be a different mechanism introduced systematically to get more food under the existing and declining land area.
Rural Poverty/Low Farmer Income
The majority of farmers in India live in rural areas. Many of them make agriculture / farming their only livelihood. Although the farmer deserves full respect and value, he does not receive them. Intermediaries make all the profits effortlessly. Farmers do not get what they deserve. At least they do not get income equal to their expenses. How to think about profits? Therefore, farmers have to bear the burden of heavy debt. That is why farmers tend to commit suicide. Policies should be implemented to change this unfair procedure. Direct marketing methods should be introduced where farmers can receive the whole revenue for their effort.
Withstand Climate Change
"Climate change" is one of the most talked-about topics these days in India. It is because it directly affects on the agriculture and food security of the country. Drought conditions, heavy rains, floods, forest fires, etc. are the major climatic disasters that affect agriculture. There should be a long term procedure to withstand climatic changes. Production of new crop varieties that perform well under harsh conditions, proper irrigation management, proper soil fertility management, proper pest and disease management, proper land management, etc. like measures should be done in a sustainable manner. Research and development in the agriculture sector must be improved and funds must be provided for those activities. New innovative technologies should be adapted such as protected agriculture, smart agriculture, and precision agriculture. Those will help you to adapt to climate changes in advance. Always should focus on the sustainable management of all the aspects (Ecological/environmental, Social, and Economical) of agriculture.
This is one of the highly underdeveloped aspects of agriculture. Due to inadequate extension service available in India, valuable information and research findings don’t go to the grass-root level. Farmers don’t get enough understanding of newly introduced technologies. So they work as usual without adapting to new technologies. A proper system is needed to change this situation and stop the wasting money that spends to find new things.
Withstand Human-Animal Conflict
Human-animal conflict is highly talked about in many agricultural areas of India. But still, there is no proper mechanism to minimize this problem. The number of people and animals dying due to this human-animal conflict is increasing day by day. This destroys a great deal of the food that can be fed to humans. So an immediate and sustainable action should be
taken place in a systematic way.
Over the past period of time, agriculture in India is stagnating without any good change. No proper management is there to deal with arouse problems related to agriculture. Institutional coverage for these matters should be increased much more. Farmers are the ones who suffer more and more due to all these matters. Tolerating all these external problems, they produce food for the nation. But they don’t get enough financial returns. In the new agricultural transformation, farmers should be the ones who centralized and all other aspects should be developed in a most sustainable manner thinking of farmer’s prosperity.