Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar today said his government is committed to improvements in agriculture which could help farmers of the state in raising their incomes and ensure that there was at least one dish made from products from the state on every Indian's plate.
Launching a software for advance payment of grants for agriculture input, said to be the first such endeavour in the country, Kumar said that ever since his stint as the union agriculture minister his thrust has been on a 'Rainbow Revolution' which was wider in its scope than 'Green Revolution' and 'White Revolution'.
As part of the scheme for advance payment of agriculture input Rs 6000 each were transferred into the accounts of more than 20,000 farmers for the purpose of organic farming in Patna, Samastipur, Nalanda and Vaishali districts.
The occasion was also marked by inauguration of projects worth over Rs 70 crore, all of them relating to agriculture.
"A lot of progress has been made by the state in agriculture since I took over in 2005. When Manmohan Singh was the prime minister, an agriculture expert had remarked about low productivity in Bihar at a meeting. I had promised that things will look up fast," Kumar said at the function.
With emphasis on replacement of seeds, mechanization of farming and use of compost, Bihar achieved record production of rice and wheat. Further improvements were achieved with stress on better irrigation, he said.
"In our third agriculture roadmap for 2018-23, we are laying stress on organic farming and fresh survey of land holdings. We can confidently look forward to better earnings for farmers and foresee a future where a Bihari dish will be on every Indian's plate", he said.
Kumar said altogether nine districts in the state have been earmarked for organic farming out of which four have been covered under the scheme of advance payment of grants as a pilot project.
"We envisaged the scheme following studies that suggested that it was best to provide help to farmers at the time of cultivation. Gradually, more districts and farmers will be covered and if need arises the amount of grant may also be hiked," he added.
Bihar occupies the third position in the country in vegetable production, Kumar said adding that growth in agriculture must not remain confined to foodgrains or milk, he said.
"That is the reason why during my tenure as the union agriculture minister I used to speak of a rainbow revolution comprising all-round agriculture growth instead of green or white revolution. We are proceeding in Bihar with the same philosophy", he added.
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