The various gaps and issues which affect the agriculture sector and related government efforts can be resolved using a systematic approach which will not only increase the income of farmers and bring about major improvement in the agriculture sector but also benefit all sections of society and the nation.
Founder and general secretary of Patanjali Yogpeeth Trust and vice chancellor of the University of Patanjali, Acharya Balkrishna said this while talking to The Pioneer about Nav-Harit Kranti an agro-vision document for sustainable agriculture and food security in India. This document prepared under the guidance of Swami Ramdev and leadership of Acharya Balkrishna along with the efforts of about 150 scientists of Patanjali Research Institute (PRI) presents a comprehensive plan to solve the problems related to Indian farmers and agriculture.
He said, “The government schemes are not reaching the farmers fully while issues of the farmers are not reaching the government as there is a gap. We intend to provide traceability and a one-stop solution for the sector. Farming being a state subject, we found in our research that noteworthy work has been done in the sector in some states while little has been done in some states.”
Regarding the solutions, Balkrishna said, “In our agro-vision document we have acknowledged all those who have contributed towards the solutions. The solutions include aspects ranging from data sharing and provision of good seeds and soil to fertiliser calculator. There are gaps and overlaps despite the government intending to benefit farmers and the sector. Today, most farmers mix dung with urea but fertiliser calculators are based on chemical fertilisers. When it comes to the soil testing mechanism, the labs are inadequate and lack transparency. We have developed affordable soil testing kits. When a farm is affected by disease, we offer both organic and chemical treatments. Digital agriculture is another aspect which will considerably improve the situation.”
He further elaborated that there are two components to the comprehensive solution- pre harvest and post harvest of the farmers and the new green revolution. “We have already involved farmers through a digital app. For the other component the support of the government is essential. Efforts are also being undertaken to facilitate this,” said Balkrishna. He stressed that improving the lot of farmers will not benefit them and the agriculture sector alone but the society and nation as a whole too.