The 3-day mega ‘GRAM 2016′ ends with a few powerful promises delivered by Rajasthan CM Vasundhara Raje. Happy farmers confidently return with a newfound vision and vigour’, thus fulfilling the main objective of organizing this fest.
‘Global Rajasthan Agritech Meet’, a historic agricultural convention that combines traditional wisdom with advanced technology, beautifully translates into ‘GRAM’ (villages), the epicentre of every nation’s growth. Villages form the backbone of India, which is a predominantly agricultural country. ‘Grameens’ (villagers) are a part of Rajasthan’s vast family. The growth of our nation is impossible if we leave villagers behind, especially the farmers and cattlemen, in the race towards progress. Rajasthan enjoys the largest cultivable area in the country (225 lakh hectares), which accounts for 14% of the national average. Diverse geographical problems impose great challenges for farmers residing in India’s largest state. To transform this fear and shortcomings into joys and success, Raje-led BJP government organized ‘GRAM’, India’s biggest agricultural exhibition cum conference that promotes self-reliance, self-respect, and self-dependency at village level.
How Raje Sees GRAM
GRAM, unlike other traditional conferences on agriculture, is not a parrot talk. It’s a comprehensive Green Revolution focused on creating ‘Unnat Krishi Sansaadhan’ (advanced agricultural techniques) for farmers. The idea is to inculcate innovation in everyday activities so that it could lead to overall growth of the state. GRAM gives way to ‘Nayi Soch, Nayi Pahal’, with the mission to bring change at the grassroots.
Key Announcements Made By Raje in this Direction
At the closing ceremony of GRAM, Rajasthan CM made some important announcements irrigation, agriculture, smart villages and farmer insurance schemes. The crowd present inside the auditorium cheerfully welcomed this change with claps and applauds.
Here are some snippets from CM Raje’s valedictory address delivered yesterday.
- GRAM will be held in every Division.
Seeing the enthusiasm and participation spirit of farmers arriving at JECC, the CM decided to organize GRAM in rest 6 divisions, namely Ajmer, Bharatpur, Bikaner, Jodhpur, Kota and Udaipur. This will encourage contribution of agriculturists at district-level.
- ‘Smart Villages’ will crop up in the state.
Minister of Urban Development, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu expressed interest in ‘Smart Village Project’ proposed by Raje. Under his direction, Rajasthan Government plans to link all smart villages with the Centre’s Smart Village project.
- Centre of Excellence & ITIs for Training
CECs will be established in villages to encourage farmers for aromatic/medicinal plant gardening. These centres will impart knowledge regarding different plant varieties and suitable growth conditions for them. ITIs will be linked with these CECs to impart skill-based training in agriculture.
- Hassle-free Loans under Sahkaar Kisan Yojana
A happy news for farmers, who’ve applied for farming loans under state’s Sahkaar Kisaan Yojana. Applicants of this scheme will be granted up to Rs. 20 Lakhs within 15 days of document submission. The amount will be directly transferred to their bank accounts. Farmers who settle this loan on time will be granted 2% grant on loan interest.
- Accidental Cover of Rs. 5 Lakh at just Rs. 27 annual premium.
The government aims to cover 25 Lakh farmers under ‘Sahkaar Vyaktigat Durghatna Beema’. Under this scheme, agriculturists and their families have to pay just Rs. 27/year to get insured against accidental injuries. This is probably the lowest premium amount ever announced by a state government. Currently, the proposed amount for insurance is Rs. 5 lakh but the government might raise it to Rs. 10 lakh in the coming times.
- Fisheries & Poultry will Supply Secondary Income to Villagers
Regardless of being a dry and arid state, Rajasthan is among the leading fish producing state in India. A big-sized Panaque or Catfish costs up to Rs. 65,000 in the international market. Seeing the rising demands of ornamental fish at global level, Raje encouraged farmers to raise fish in their agricultural fields. Poultry is the second most economical means of earning income. GRAM saw advanced chicken breeds like ‘Kadaknath’ which are high on proteins and low on cholesterol. Farmers can rear such breeds in their poultry farms to earn abundant profits.
- More Dairies will be Established.
In last 3 years, cattlemen of Rajasthan have reaped immense profits from dairy farming. Consequently, Rajasthan ranks second in milk production at national level. GRAM 2016 displayed high milk producing varieties of cattle to lure farmers into animal husbandry profession. In future, more dairies will be established so that farmers can generate more income.
- Experts will Help Newbie under ‘Maanad Krishi Vistar’.
Rajasthan Government selected a few experienced agriculture experts from the state so that newbie farmers can benefit from their knowledge. 300 experts will be appointed as Maanad Krishi Vistaar Karyakarta (Honorary Agriculture Extension workers) to spread this knowledge in villages and districts.
- Soil Health Cards will be Issued before 2017.
Government has already collected 23 Lakh soil samples for lab testing from various regions. Based on the results of soil test, government will issue soil health cards to determine the soil fertility level for agriculture. These cards will be issued before 2017.
- Government will Allot Lands to Tenant Farmers
To introduce uniformity and high standards of living in state, government plans to allot a decent portion of cultivable land to farmers so that they can independently practice sustainable agriculture at personal level. The process of allotment will be launched as soon as possible.
- Raje Puts an End to Meena-Meena Conflicts
Meena-Meena conflict got hyped up after a few opposition leaders decided to use it for their political advantage. Putting an end to all controversies, the CM advised farmers to prioritize important matters, such as occupation, development and education. Earlier, the government had announced cast-based reservations for all Meenas residing in the state, irrespective of slight variations in their Hindi surname spelling.
Farmers were happy and enthused with these announcements and awe-stuck by the exhibition. GRAM 2016 started with the objective of replacing Inorganic methods with sustainable, ‘green’ agriculture and ended with hundreds of smiling faces returning to their homes. The attendees acquired significant information on technically advanced procedures, machinery and advanced breed of animals. With the glorious ending of this globally renowned fair, Rajasthan government is determined to break-free from the shackles of ‘Beemari’ whereas the farmers look forward to living a stable, affluent and happy life.