Headlines May 16, 2020
Finance Minister announces benefits for agriculture sector
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman announced more details from India’s Rs 20 lakh crore economy package. The minister said that a cluster based approach will be taken to promote Modi’s ‘vocal for local’ decision. During her speech on Friday, Sitaraman mentioned further details about benefits for farmers and India’s agricultural sector.
Excerpts from speech
•The government will soon create Rs 1 lakh crore fund for agri infrastructure projects at farm-gate and aggregation points like primary co-operative societies and producers’ organisations. Lack of adequate cold chain and post-harvest management infrastructure in the vicinity of farm gate is causing gaps in the value chain.
•The Essential Commodities Act was announced. The act will be amended to enable better price realisation for farmers. Agriculture foodstuff including cereals, edible oils, pulses, onions, potatoes and oilseeds will be deregulated. The stock limit will be imposed under very exceptional circumstances like calamities and famine with surge in its prices.
• Laws will be introduced to implement agriculture marketing reforms so that more marketing choices are given for farmers. Farmers can sell their products at better and attractive prices. In the ‘One Nation, One Market’ policy, farmers can sell their products at attractive prices anywhere across India.
• Funds of Rs 10,000 crore will be kept aside for micro food enterprises. It will promote state-wise produce of products.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, while addressing the nation last Monday had announced for Rs 20 lakh crore amount for revival of Indian economy due to the ongoing Coronavirus crisis. Sitaraman has been providing further details about the package since last two days in her press meets.
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