Agro policy should boost farmers' income: Book

·2-min read

New Delhi, Feb 16 (PTI) Pro-farmer policies may have increased the overall agro input but they could not succeed in raising farmers' income, says a new book which suggests peasants must be gradually made self-dependent instead of keeping them permanently subsidy dependent.

'Turn Around India 2020: Surmounting Past Legacy', written by entrepreneur R P Gupta, provides creative ideas for hassle-free growth and recommends fiscal and monetary stimuli along with structural reforms for ending the pandemic crisis.

It says India has been facing uneven growth and for pro-growth reforms, it must spread economic awareness and craft team spirit among all stakeholders.

It also suggests that for unlocking its hidden potential, the country must surmount its colonial legacy and accept 'free economy' by conviction and not by compulsion.

Gupta writes that agricultural policy, by and large, must focus on boosting farmers' income and for reducing the agro inputs.

'Farmers must be gradually made self-dependent instead of keeping them permanently subsidy dependent. For this, multipronged strategy is needed,' he says.

Successive governments have formulated pro-farmer policies by providing subsidies, procuring foodgrains at MSP, and giving the priority loan and such assistance. These policies have certainly increased the overall agro output, but could not succeed in raising farmers' income,' Gupta argues.

According to him, the sale price of agro produce at farm gate is not keeping pace with the manufactured products and other services and hence, the income of an average farmer's family has not improved compared to the people engaged in other activities.

Gupta also feels that for winning a big war like COVID-19, India, as a family, needs unity among all family members.

'An aggressive plan may be prepared envisaging major reforms surpassing the milestone of 1991. Thereafter, this crisis will turn out to be a trivial issue. Rather, India will convert the crisis into an opportunity and regain its past glory and lead the world,' he writes.

He says the current crisis due to the pandemic is unprecedented and rich nations might overcome by increasing the fiscal deficits and printing currencies.

But India 'cannot rely upon this route alone'; it must use all tools such as fiscal, monetary and reform stimulus aggressively'.

The budgetary resources may be wisely used to get a multiplier effect and these must be leveraged by engaging the states, public sector units and private sector, Gupta says.

The book, published by Himalaya Publishing House, was launched recently by BJP MP Jual Oram. PTI ZMN RDS RDS