iconimg Tuesday, September 01, 2015

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
Bhopal, June 24, 2013
Madhya Pradesh has again posted the highest agriculture growth in the country this year.
According to the government’s claim, the state achieved a growth rate of 13.33% in 2013. Last year, the agriculture growth, however, was pegged at 18.91%. The government considers the back-to-back highest agriculture growth achieved by the state as a rare feat in the country.

According to an official release, the state produced 2.31 crore metric tonnes food grains in 2012-13 against 2.03 crore MT in 2011-12.

With this, Madhya Pradesh surpassed Haryana in food grain production and now stands third after Punjab and Uttar Pradesh.

In 2012-13, Madhya Pradesh contributed 9.50% to the country’s total food grains production of 2553.62 lakh MT. Also, the state tops the country in gram and pulses production by posting a production of 31.99 lakh MT gram and 46.89 lakh MT pulses.

The release says the achievements of the state in agriculture are a result of well-contemplated and committed efforts of the state government.

Madhya Pradesh is the only state in the country to extend (short term) farm loan at 0% interest rate to farmers. Last year, loans to the tune of Rs. 10,800 crore were advanced to the farmers.

This year, a target of providing Rs. 12,000 crore loan had been set.

The government claims augmentation of irrigation facilities played a major role in agricultural growth in the state.

Over a period of only six years, the irrigation facility had been increased from 7 lakh hectares to 26 lakh hectares which is a record in the country. Fertilizers and seeds were made available to the farmers on time.

The farmers were provided the facility of advance stocking of fertilizers which saved the farmers Rs. 300 crore last year.

Area under agriculture has also been increased considerably over the years. In 2008-09, a total of 196.60 lakh hectares was under agriculture in the state. This has increased to 223 lakh hectares, representing an increase of about 27 lakh hectares.

For better coordination between agriculture and allied departments and to facilitate quick decisions regarding agriculture, an agriculture cabinet has been constituted in the state.