Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday released the next installment of financial benefits under Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN), transferring Rs 19,500 crore plus to more than 9.75 crore beneficiary farmer families.
This was the 9th installment of the financial benefit under the scheme.
Also interacted with farmer beneficiaries during the event, through video conferencing, he expressed hope that the amount received on Monday will help the farmers, and also noted that the Kisan Infrastructure Fund scheme with Rs 1 lakh crore corpus also completes one year, a government release said.
The Prime Minister touched upon initiatives such as Mission Honey-Bee and making saffron from Jammu & Kashmir for NAFED shops. Honey mission has led to Rs 700,000 crore export of honey resulting in extra income for farmers, he said.
Referring to the upcoming 75th Independence Day, he said that apart from being an occasion for pride, it is also an opportunity for new resolutions. “We have to take this opportunity to decide where we want to see India in the coming 25 years. Our agriculture and our farmers have a big role in determining the condition of India in 2047, when the country completes 100 years of independence,” he said.
Modi lauded the farmers for record production during the pandemic and outlined the government’s measures to reduce the hardships of farmers during the difficult period.
He said that the government ensured uninterrupted supply of seeds, fertilisers and access to markets. Urea was available throughout and when prices of DAP increased manifold in the international market, the government immediately arranged Rs 12,000 crore for that so that the farmers do not feel the load, he said.
The Prime Minister said the government has made the biggest ever purchase from farmers at MSP, be it Kharif or Rabi season. With this, about Rs 1,70,000 crore have reached directly into the accounts of rice farmers and about Rs 85,000 crore have gone directly into the account of wheat farmers.
He reminded that he urged the farmers to increase the production of pulses, when there was a shortage of pulses in the country, a few years ago. “As a result, there has been an increase of almost 50 per cent in the production of pulses in the country in the last six years,” he said.
He highlighted National Edible Oil Mission-Oil Palm i.e. NMEO-OP as a pledge for achieving self-reliance in edible oil. Today, when the country is remembering the Quit India Movement, this resolve fills us with new energy, he said.
Modi also pointed out that for the first time, India has reached among the top 10 countries of the world in terms of agricultural exports. “The country has set new records of agricultural exports during the corona period. Today, when India is becoming recognised as a big agricultural exporting country, it is not right to stay dependent on imports for our needs of edible oil,” he said.
The Prime Minister remarked that the small farmers are now being given utmost priority in the agricultural policies. Under PM Kisan Samman Nidhi, Rs 1.60 crore has been given to farmers so far, including Rs 1 lakh crore transferred during the pandemic period.
More than 2 crore Kisan Credit Cards were also issued, mostly to small farmers. Such farmers will be benefitted by the agriculture infrastructure and connectivity infrastructure that is coming up in the country. Initiatives like Food Parks, Kisan Rails and Infrastructure Fund will help small farmers, he said, adding that they will increase the small farmers’ access to market and his bargaining power through FPOs.