Special Kharif Strategy 2021

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    The Ministry of Agriculture has formulated a special Kharif strategy for implementation in the upcoming Kharif season with an aim to attain self-sufficiency in the production of pulses. 

    Rationale Behind The Move 

    • India is still importing around 4 lakh tonnes of pulses to meet its demand. 
    • This special programme will increase the production of pulses (Tur, Moong and )to a great extent. 
    • It will play an important role in reducing the import burden and usher India to become Atma Nirbhar in the production of pulses.

    Major Points of Strategy

    A detailed plan for both area expansion and productivity enhancement for Tur, Moong and Urad has been formulated.

    • Under the strategy, High Yielding Varieties of seeds that are available either with the Central Seed Agencies or in the States will be distributed free of cost to increase area through the intercropping and sole crop. 
    • For the coming Kharif 2021, it is proposed to distribute more than 20 lakh mini kits of seeds amounting to nearly Rs 82 crore.
    •  It is ten times more than last year. 
    • The total cost for these mini-kits will be borne by the Central Government. 
    • For effective implementation of the Kharif mini kit programme, a massive outreach with the concerned district will be held both through a series of webinars by the central government and state governments concerned to ensure that there are no hiccups.  
    • The Agricultural Technology Application Research Institutes(ATARIs) and Krishi Vigyan Kendras will also be roped in for effective implementation and training to the farmers.

    About Kharif Crops 

    • Kharif crops are grown with the onset of monsoon in different parts of the country and these are harvested in September-October.
    • Important crops grown during this season are paddy, maize, jowar, bajra, tur (arhar), moong,urad, cotton, jute, groundnut and soybean.
      • Some of the most important rice-growing regions are Assam, West Bengal, coastal regions of Odisha, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Maharashtra, particularly the (Konkan coast) along with Uttar Pradesh and Bihar. Recently, paddy has also become an important crop of Punjab and Haryana. In states like Assam, West Bengal and Odisha.

    Pulses in India

    • About: Pulses are annual leguminous crops yielding between one and 12 grains or seeds of variable size, shape and colour within a pod, used for both food and feed. 
      • These serve as an important source of protein for a large portion of the global population, pulses contribute to healthy soils and climate change mitigation through their nitrogen-fixing properties. 
    • Major pulses grown and consumed in India: Bengal Gram (Desi ChickPea / Desi Chana), Pigeon Peas (Arhar / Toor / Red Gram), Green Beans (Moong Beans), ChickPeas (Kabuli Chana), Black Matpe (Urad / Mah / Black Gram), Red Kidney Beans (Rajma), Black Eyed Peas (Lobia), Lentils (Masoor), White Peas (Matar) .
    • Production: India is the largest producer (25% of global production), consumer (27% of world consumption) and importer (14%) of pulses in the world. 
      • Pulses account for around 20 percent of the area under food grains and contribute around 7-10 per cent of the total foodgrains production in the country. 
      • Pulses are grown in both Kharif and Rabi seasons, Rabi pulses contribute more than 60 per cent of the total production.
      • Gram is the most dominant pulse having a share of around 40 per cent in the total production followed by Tur/Arhar.
      • Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Karnataka are the top five pulse producing States.
    • Price Support: The policy prescription for ensuring reasonable price to the farmers largely centres around procuring the pulses by providing Minimum Support Prices (MSP) to the farmers through National Agricultural Cooperative Marketing Federation of India (NAFED) and more recently through Small Farmers Agri Consortium (SFAC).

    Minimum Support Price (MSP)

    • It is the minimum price set by the Government at which farmers can expect to sell their produce for the season. 
      • When market prices fall below the announced MSPs, procurement agencies step in to procure the crop and ‘support’ the prices.

    Source :AIR