Indian agriculture needs renewal with technology: President

Chandigarh: President Ram Nath Kovind on Saturday said that Indian “agriculture needs a renewal with contemporary technology, protection against climate change, price fluctuations and demand shocks, and sustained investment by and partnership with business” for enhanced agricultural value and competitiveness, and better incomes.

Kovind, who was speaking after inaugurating December 1-4 Agro Tech India-2018, said, “Indian agriculture needs a renewal with contemporary technology; protection against climate change, price fluctuations and demand shocks; and sustained investment by and partnership with business. Together these will enhance agricultural value and competitiveness, as well as lead to better incomes.”

The President said that through human history, agriculture has moved ahead with cross-fertilisation. “It is the ideal stage for partnerships, for symbiosis and for mutual learning and sharing. Partnerships can be formed across sectors and across geographies. In previous decades, manufacturing and mechanisation have been of appreciable utility to agriculture. Today a strong relationship is emerging between agriculture and the services sector,” he said.

“Biotechnology, nanotechnology, data science, remote-sensing imaging, autonomous aerial and ground vehicles, and artificial intelligence hold the key to generating more value for agriculture. He expressed confidence that Agro Tech India-2018 would promote specific partnerships that would benefit the farmers of India,” added the President.

While pointing to the issue of pollution due to stubble burning, the President said that the farmers of Punjab and Haryana are the pride for our country. “They have never shied away from a challenge and a responsibility to larger society. Today, we are facing a problem related to the disposal of crop residue and of safe and clean removal of husk or stubble. In an extreme form, the burning of such items is leading to pollution that affects even little children. It is for all of us, including the state governments, the progressive farmers, and other stakeholders, to come up with a solution. And no doubt technology will help us find a solution.”

Earlier, the Union Minister for Food Processing Industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal said that scheme like Mega Food Park, Cold Chain, and Mini Food Park have been implemented by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries. On the occasion, she also informed about other details related to the Ministry.

While praising the works being done in the field of agriculture under the leadership of Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Radha Mohan Singh said that Haryana has done great work in the area of agribusiness. He said that until the village does not become stronger, the country cannot become stronger. He said that challenges in food production, rising population, eating habits, grain market, and others are the pressing concerns of the agriculture sector. “Therefore, the farmers should be empowered,” added Singh.