Lieutenant Governor of Jammu and Kashmir, Manoj Sinha on Wednesday attended a conference on the agricultural sector organized by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare at Vigyan Bhawan in New Delhi.
Speaking on the occasion, the Lt Governor shared J&K’s perspective on the broad approach of the UT Government taking Agriculture and allied sectors on the path of sustainable and inclusive growth.
“We have created an enabling environment for transforming Agriculture and allied sectors of J&K to increase the income of our farmers in line with the national targets, create jobs, ensure food security, speed up the economy and enhance the contribution of agriculture and allied sectors in the Gross Domestic Product of the UT,” Sinha said.
The Lt Governor also expressed gratitude to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar for extending liberal financial assistance to support efforts in widening the development of Agriculture and allied sectors in Jammu & Kashmir.
Further, the LG highlighted the reformative interventions made by the government leading to sweeping changes in J&K’s Agriculture sector during the past year.
“Consistent efforts are being made to diversify agriculture by bringing in credit, technology, extension to step up the present growth rate; besides building capacities of farmers together with creating entrepreneurship; encouraging High-Density Plantation; extending agricultural mechanization support and developing Market infrastructure,” he added.
While listing out the support extended to the farmers for getting maximum returns, and facilitating Market Linkages of the local produce, the Lt Governor said that the low remunerative crops are being replaced with the high-value cash crops. There has been a massive increase in the cultivation of organic and exotic vegetables during the last two years.
For the first time, more than 2000 truckloads of vegetables have been marketed across the country, he added.
The LG said that enhanced focus is also being laid to stabilize the fruit market of Horticulture produce of J&K and ensure round the year sale of the fruits like Apple on good prices, besides establishment of storage within J&K.
During the last one year, 40,000 MTs of storage has been established thereby making available a total of 1.65 LMT of CA storage facilities in Jammu & Kashmir. Also, another 35,000 MTs of storage capacity is under construction.
On the occasion, the Lt Governor sought Rs 800 crore support from the Union Government for Modified High-Density Plantation in J&K.
He further requested the Union Government for making interventions for protected cultivation in the higher reaches of J&K; encouraging the Olive oil and other oil seed production; supporting the initiative “PARVAZ” with at least 50 per cent of subsidy under the scheme on all major crops and a special support package under Sub Mission on Agriculture Mechanisation (SMAM).
Addressing the conference, Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar stated that the benefits of Central Government schemes for the Agriculture sector should reach the correct farmers through better implementation in the UTs. Although funds are not a constraint, it is the implementation of the scheme which should be proper, he added.
The Union Minister said that the Agriculture Infrastructure Fund will provide infrastructure facilities at the farm gates for small farmers