Crop Diversification

Context:

• The Department of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare (DA&FW) is implementing the Crop Diversification Programme (CDP), a sub-scheme of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) in the Original Green Revolution States viz; Haryana, Punjab & Western Uttar Pradesh since 2013-14 to divert the area of water intensive paddy crop to alternative crops like pulses, oilseeds, coarse cereals, nutri cereals, cotton etc.

Why is the diversification necessary?

• The mono cropping agricultural setup in the states of Punjab, Haryana and Western Uttar Pradesh has caused devastating effects.
• The purpose of Green Revolution was to attain self sufficiency which has been attained and now due to the Government’s policies such as MSP has encouraged farmers to grow only rice and wheat.
• This is worrying because it has disastrous impact on the economy and as well as the ecology.
• Over usage of fertilizers and water has led to the degradation of the soil and has serious impact on the health of the soil.

Initiatives:

• Government of India is also supplementing the efforts of state governments to encourage diversified production of crops such as pulses, coarse cereals, nutri cereals, cotton & oilseeds under National Food Security Mission (NFSM) and horticultural crops under Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH).
• The Government is implementing a Scheme on ‘Promotion of Agricultural Mechanization for In-Situ Management of Crop Residue in the States of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi’
• Financial assistance is provided to the farmers for purchase of identified crop residue management machinery and to the Cooperative Societies of Farmers, Farmers Producers Organization (FPOs), Registered Farmers Societies and Panchayats for establishment of Custom Hiring Centers (CHCs) of identified crop residue management machinery.
• Financial assistance is also provided to the State Governments, Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs), Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) Institutions, Central Government Institutions, Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs) etc. for Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities for creating awareness on crop residue management.
• The ICAR has developed Pusa Decomposer, a microbial consortium of fungal species (both in liquid and capsule forms) for rapid decomposition of paddy straw.

Source: THE HINDU

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