After the current re-shuffle of t he ministers, the two new ministers, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Krishna Raj will work with agriculture minister Radha Mohan Singh. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has inducted two new ministers of state at the agriculture ministry, as part of the cabinet reshuffle. Together with Parshottam Rupala, the agricultural and farm welfare ministry had three ministers of state. S. S. Ahluwalia and Sudarshan Bhagat, who earlier were junior ministers of agriculture, are moved to drinking water and sanitation ministry and tribal affairs ministry, respectively.
Gajendra Singh Shekhawat is currently a member of Lok Sabha, representing Jodhpur in Rajasthan. Krishna Raj, also an MP from the Lok Sabha who was elected from Shahjahanpur in Uttar Pradesh, was shifted from the women and child development ministry where she was a junior minister.
Modi government has been trying hard to reviving India’s agriculture sector and improving farm incomes which remain a key challenge for the government. Demands of loan waivers and remunerative crop prices has been much of trouble for the government. A record harvest in 2016-17 led to a crash in farm gate prices of key crops which was worsened by the cash crunch following the government’s demonetization.
Prime Minister Modi has targeted to double farmer incomes by 2022 from their current levels. The agriculture sector employs over half of India’s workforce. PM’s excessive stress on agriculture and doubling farmers’ income had been strong voice of the NDA government.