Agricultural circulation policies in India express a set of obligatory protocols intended to achieve certain public goals. The Increase in agricultural productivity and rapid industrial growth from 1992 to 2016 has considerably achieved in reducing poverty in the country from 24 % to 15 %. India has raised the GDP per capita of the country by more than five % per year, which eventually eased the deprivation and transformed the country into one of the major agricultural exporters. With the growth in per capita, GDP demand for food grains is projected to be at the level of 256 mt by the year 2020 (Agricultural Policy Review of India., 2018). The financial cost of micronutrient shortages is projected to be 2.4-10.0 % of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in many developing countries. Agriculture is important in order to fight poverty and malnutrition in the country. In India, approximately 60% of small holders engaged in agriculture for their livelihood falls below the poverty line. Therefore, agricultural livelihood is needed to be addressed in order to eradicate deprivation in the country (Nikam and Kumar., 2017). National Nutritional Policy confirmed that sustenance is a multi-sectoral subject and hence needs to be tackled at various levels since it affects the country’s development and vice versa. It is therefore significant to tackle the problem of nutrition equally through direct intercession or through various development policy mechanisms.
Over the past years, agrarian approaches to accomplish the food security, often interpreted as self-sufficiency, pursue to ensure that farmers receive the remunerative prices as well as safeguarding the consumer’s interest by making the commodity available at reasonable prices. India, the world’s second most populous country faces a challenge on the land and other resources in order to meet the food and developmental needs of the country, which therefore places the natural resources of the country under severe pressure. The farming approach must accelerate all-round improvement and financial practicality of agriculture in far reaching terms (Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi., 2018)
The agriculture sector in India shows suitable growth with the advanced development of technology, irrigation, and pricing policies. Therefore, the agriculture policy must speed up the all-round development and economic sustainability of agriculture in broad terms. Agrarians must be provided with the essential provisions, corroboration and incentives, where it focusses both on the income and greater in-cultivate and off-cultivate occupation and business openings. The transformation of the agricultural sector from the conventional subsistence roots by technical change to a modernized form is a phenomenon observed in most of the developing countries. In the last five to six decades, Indian agribusiness has witnessed various changes. Advancement combined with interests in water system foundation, promoting and handling facilities, prompted a remarkable increment in the utilization of modem inputs. These advancements raised the agricultural items for business sectors rather than utilization by the farm households. Consequently, export surplus has been made by increasing agricultural production of different yields at both state and national levels. However, the country still needs to speed up the existing efforts and launch new strong policy initiatives in order to continue attainment in the future prospects (Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi., 2018)
Agriculture Policy formulation in India is a very complex field with multifarious issues hovering over the sector since agriculture is one of the most intense subjects of the state. Policy making in agriculture is set up with several dilemmas. First, agriculture is an unorganized sectoral activity; second, the way information flows to the agricultural sector is not as rapid compared to other sectors; third, the climatic difference and its influences, and fourth, the distribution of land and assets within the sector is not properly made. Therefore, the impact of agricultural policy in India needs to be analyzed in speculation with other proposed policies. The agricultural policy practice for the last five decades can be elucidated in three periods (Bhan and Bahera, 2014).
Pre-green revolution period
The period from 1950-1965 is called as pre green revolution period. The main policy launched after the Independence was on expanding the production of foodstuff and improving the food security through agricultural land tenure and large-scale investments in land irrigation and power. The main objective of this policy was to abolish the transitional landlordism, confirming the possession rights to the land tillers, and safeguard a constant development in the quality of the landholding. Provisions were also made to certify that the inheritors of land do not lease out or misuse the land. Other policy processes implemented during this period include the improvement of farmer’s access to credit, markets and other services (Agricultural Policy in India since Independence., 2018).
Green revolution period
The period from 1965-1980 is called as green revolution period. The implementation of enhanced crop production technologies and seed varieties turned out to be the main provenance of progression during this period. The main objective of this period was to achieve self-sustainability and self-sufficiency in food grains and to increase the agricultural goods and products in order to meet the needs of the industry as well as import and export of raw materials. The government of India adopted the method of trade and commerce of high-yielding varieties (HYVs) of grains for rice and wheat for agricultural production in the irrigated regions of the country. The major accomplishment of the green revolution era was the fulfillment of self-sufficiency in food grains. Furthermore, the green revolution also influences the agricultural inputs industry, initiating an advanced growth in the fertilizers, seeds and other machinery industries.
Post-green revolution period
The period from 1980-1991 is called Post green revolution period and was reflected with an advancement in technology in different regions of the state. The main objective of the policy throughout the period was to embolden the investments in the different fields of the agricultural sector (Pandey, 2018). Additionally, the agricultural economy experiences broadening and improvement in animal by-products like meat and milk, as well as in vegetables and fruits produce. Likewise, an unending research on rice and other coarse grains positively influences with the expansion of these food crops into other arid areas.
Economic reforms period
The attention of agricultural policy since 1991 has shifted to improve the operation of marketplaces, dropping of unwarranted legislation, and liberalizing agricultural trade. Nevertheless, the successive trade policy reforms aimed at liberalizing the import and export of agricultural food produces by steadily eliminating the unnecessary limitations on various agricultural trades (Arora, 2013).
In 2000, the Government of India published an inclusive agricultural policy statement, the National Agricultural Policy (NAP), that put up strong goals and processes to all the leading sub-sectors of agriculture. The main objective of this policy was to achieve an agricultural growth rate of 4% per year based on effectual usage of resources. The policy also seeks to achieve sustainable growth and equity in the product. A number of initiatives were also adopted during this plan in accordance with the agricultural policy 2000 such as establishment of watershed development fund, introducing of technologies for horticulture, and other centrally sponsored schemes. The sum of all the budgetary transfers to producers and consumers from taxpayers without accounting the negative market cost, adding up to 1.9% of India's GDP in 2014-16. This demonstrates the high cost expense to the Indian economy and contrasts with the sector’s poor execution in efficiency development, emphasizing the need for resource requirement to be connected more viably. Numerous policy initiatives are still in progress or in the pipeline and this ought to be proceeded or strengthened.
- There should be evenness in the Policy in order to encourage feasible competence growth by strengthening the administrative regulatory governing the land issues, establishment of market regulations across the state, expanding and reinforcing the proceeding initiatives, funding farmers to incorporate in competitive markets by allowing the private sector to play a greater role, encouraging effective and practical utilization of variable sources, reinforcing and encouraging of long term credits, concentrating speculations on cultivating the agricultural enabling environment such as development of infrastructure and education in rural areas, increasing research and strengthening the priority setting processes (Taylor and Bhasme, 2018)
- Build up the role of agriculture in upgrading sustenance and nourishment security, enhancing food and nutrition security.
- Improve agrarian organizations and administration frameworks by clarifying the roles and responsibilities and bringing together all the important policies under a single umbrella. Strengthening coordination among various ministries and agencies between the state and the central government. Giving importance to various institutional reforms and permit development of single market for agricultural products. (Agricultural Policy Review of India, 2018).
Make trade and commerce work for Indian agriculture by limiting export restrictions in order to create a stable and probable market environment. Decreasing tariffs will also help in reducing the restrictions on imports and make a steady business zone.
Agricultural Policy in India since Independence.
https://ageconsearch.umn.edu/bitstream/182350/2/IAAE-CONF-051.pdf [Access on 20/07/2018]
Agricultural Policy Review of India.
http://icrier.org/pdf/Agriculture-India-OECD-ICRIER.pdf [Access on 30/10/2018]
Agriculture Policy: Vision 2020. Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi http://www.planningcommission.nic.in/reports/genrep/bkpap2020/24_bg2020.pdf [Access on 29/10/2018]
Arora VPS., 2013. Agricultural Policies in India: Retrospect and Prospect. Agricultural Economics Research Review, 26 (2), pp. 135-157
Bhan S., Bahera U K., 2014. Conservation agriculture in India – Problems, prospects and policy issues. International soil and water conservation research, 2(4), pp. 1-12.
Pandey G., 2018. Challenges and future prospects of agri-nanotechnology for sustainable agriculture in India. Environmental Technology and Innovation, 11, pp.299-307.
Nikam V., Kumar S., 2017. Agriculture and Extension Policies in India: Connect and Disconnect with Nutrition. Indian Journal of Nutrition, 4(2).
Taylor M., Bhasme S., 2018. Model farmers, extension networks and the politics of agricultural knowledge transfer. Journal of rural studies, 64, pp. 1-10.
Date submitted: Aug. 31, 2018
Reviewed, edited and uploaded: Nov. 8