Himachal vegetable cultivation reaps Rs 2,500 crore

  • HT Correspondent, IANS, Shimla
  • Updated: Jul 19, 2015 15:41 IST

As the off-season vegetable cultivation of Himachal Pradesh increased to 14.60 lakh tonnes, it has helped pushing its revenue to Rs 2,500 crore in the ongoing fiscal year, an official said on Sunday.

In the current kharif (monsoon) season, four lakh hectares have been covered under food grain and the target of production has been fixed at 8.85 lakh metric tonnes, a state agriculture department official said.

Himachal Pradesh annually earns about Rs 2,500 crore from the cultivation of vegetables, while horticulture generates more than Rs 3,200 crore annually.

The cultivation of exotic vegetables and flowers in poly-houses and setting up of controlled atmosphere chains is expected to add to the earnings for growers.

During this fiscal year, Rs 450 crore would be spent under various schemes to give a boost to agricultural production and increase the income of farmers, he told IANS.

The official further said, top priority is being accorded to crop diversification, for which Rs 66 crore will be spent. They have decided to continue coffee plantation on 10 hectares and extend weather-based crop insurance scheme to peas, tomato and ginger crops. This is being done as the state's agriculture and horticulture-based economy is highly dependent on the monsoon.

The state has approached Japan International Cooperation Agency for the second phase of crop diversification project under technical cooperation, he said.

The agriculture department will also implement four national programmes for which Rs 90 crore have been earmarked.

The state has launched several schemes to transform agriculture into agri-business, including the Rs 110-crore YS Parmar Swarojagar Yojana, the Rs 154-crore Rajiv Gandhi Micro Irrigation Scheme, and the Rs 20 crore Borewell and Lift Irrigation Scheme.

To provide compensation to the farmers and farm labourers in case of accidental injury or death, the state government has launched Mukhya Mantri Kisaan Evam Khetihar Mazdoor Jeevan Suraksha Yojna under which Rs 150,000 will be given in case of death while working on the farm or machinery, and Rs 50,000 in case of permanent disability.

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