GRAM 2016: Rajasthan Government Digitalizes ‘Mandis’ for Farmers to Reap Direct Profits

Converging requirements for transparent food supply, stable agro-marketing policies and price volatility drives government to digitalization, which is essential for agricultural growth in Rajasthan. Early Adopters will Win this Race.

Today’s farmers are vulnerable to volatile crop supplies and commodity price increase in India. They need to be prepared to effectively tackle supply and demand shortages, market fluctuations and deflect money-thirsty brokers in the marketplace. According to US research reports, digitalization of agricultural processes contributes to 12% increase in market valuation and has 26% impact on a farmer’s profitability. The message is clear, if we intend to improve the condition of farmers and change the fate of rural India, digitalization of agricultural markets is a must. GRAM (Global Rajasthan Agri-tech Meet 2016) by Rajasthan Government is an effective step in this direction. It aims to promote ‘online mandis’ and small business ventures so that buyers and providers can directly interact without involving the middlemen.

‘Electronic National Agriculture Market (eNAM) will Help Farmers in Future’ says Government

As informed by Principal Secretary of Agriculture, GRAM 2016 is a promising view of future agricultural practices in India, especially in a dry state like Rajasthan. Farmers attending the mega event in Jaipur this November will be educated and registered on eNAM, a digital equivalent of real-life agricultural market to ensure better transparency, healthy competition and profitable returns to farmers. It’ll be implemented in line with Centre’s ‘Make in India‘ program through 24×7 broadband connectivity across rural regions in Rajasthan.

200  mandis from Eights selected Indian states have been linked to Union Government’s electronic format in April 2016, Rajasthan being an important participant on the list. 11 Rajasthani mandis, including Ramganj, Fatehnagar, Padampur, Bundi, Gangapur City, Baran, Bundi, Kota Anaj, Merta, Atru, Hindaun and Nagaur have been registered under this scheme. Rajasthan agricultural Department aims to add 15 new mandis to eNAM at GRAM.

With successful incorporation of digital markets in Indian system, both farmers and buyers will receive direct financial benefits from the government.

  • Farmers from different states can exchange knowledge and benefits across a common online agriculture platform.
  • They’ll have more options to sell or buy crops, vegetables, fruits and other produce.
  • Market committees often charge farmers high amount on their product sales. Since online trade is tax-free, they’ll no longer be subjected to high tax rates and service charges in future.
  • Elimination of mediators from the market will enhance the profit margin for farmers.
  • All transactions will be monitored by an online trade committee appointed by the government. The committee will ensure genuine sale/purchase and smooth functioning of the market. Government will track progress made each step to create future policies.

To wrap it up, it’s an initiative to help traders discover open prices and aims to provide equal opportunities to all.

Effective Agro-marketing Strategies will be Implemented for Promoting Micro-Enterprises

Small business bentures will be promoted alongside mainstream agriculture as a means to generate additional income for farmers. Government has come up with the concept of ‘Udyog Aadhar’– a unique ID for MSMEs (Small, Micro and Medium size enterprises) to attract more investments in agricultural industry. Currently, Rajasthan is the first Indian state to commence online registration for this scheme. A single-window system ensures quick filling, submission and approval of application. Additionally, investors can make secure transactions through e-mitra platform.

The idea is to encourage and promote agro-businesses like animal husbandry, dairy, poultry, manure production etc. online.

Future Challenges and Objectives

Providing farmers uninterrupted services, electricity supply, training and availability of computers or tablets with high-speed internet may impose a challenge for the government in future, but the authorities will make efforts to arrange better provisions to speed up this process. They aim to introduce this ground-breaking before 2020.

GRAM is to Rajasthan Government what Agricultural & Horticulture Expo is to Centre. It’ll be a powerful platform to encourage farmers for future opportunities. Various procedures, technologies and benefits will be explained to them. Experts will attend to their doubts and familiarize them with latest agricultural techniques to build up a financially sound agricultural framework in Rajasthan.

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