Pawar takes charge as Agriculture Minister
NCP-supremo Sharad Pawar on Monday took charge as Minister of Agriculture, Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, beginning his tenure for the second time.
Pawar convened a meeting of senior officials and took stock of the situation in the agriculture, which would require a fresh impetus in the face of increasing debt burden on farmers despite loan waivers.
He takes over the reigns of the agriculture affairs when the country has harvested a bumper foodgrain production and the central pool are overflowing with wheat and rice.
India is estimated to have harvested a record over 99 million tonnes of rice in 2008-09 season. Wheat output is pegged at 77.63 million tonnes, which is slightly less than last year's record 78.57 million tonnes.
On the back of bumper production and higher support price, the Centre has procured record wheat and rice in the ongoing season.
From a situation when India had to go in for imports in 2006, lifting ban on exports of wheat and non-basmati rice could be Pawar's first major administrative decision in the coming days in his second tenure at Krishi Bhavan.