Delhi is the state with the minimum number of farmers, where they contribute about 1% of the state gross domestic product (GDP) in agriculture and horticulture. Census 2011 has shown in a report that 20,000 farmers in Delhi are indulging in agriculture activities with 30,000 hectares of farming land.
For the better crop production and to enhance the cultivation process, farmers in Delhi will soon be getting the training about the technologies and scientific techniques of farming under the government's beneficiary scheme named as 'Smart Krishi Yojna'. Government is planning to evolve three presentation farms which will have training halls, godowns, mushroom cultivation labs, bee-keeping training-cum-production units, solar pumps, and a packaging house with grading and packaging machines, where the farmers will get the training of the new farming techniques and will learn about the advanced technology and machinery.
According to an official from the government's development department wheat, paddy, and mustard are included in the cropping pattern of the capital. There is a very good scope for their market value, hence, intensification of their cultivation is required to meet the domestic consumption. Under this scheme for the first time in Delhi, farmers will be provided technology to adopt high-yielding and high-qualities of agricultural and horticultural crops. The aim is to make farmers capable of enhancing their income and reduce supply dependency on neighboring state.
An estimated cost of Rs. 85 crore has been projected for this activity where the budget allocation of Rs. 10 crores has already been made. The department is now in the middle of the process to appoint a consultant to finalize the specific features of the scheme. With this great initiative, the farmers will get to learn urban kitchen gardening, for which the government will provide free kitchen-gardening kits to the farmers who are interested in it.
An agriculture policy in Delhi will lay guidelines for the overall development of agriculture and horticulture. The idea to provide these technical guidance to the farmers will shift their cropping pattern from the cultivation of agricultural crops to horticulture and floriculture crops, which will bring the better and higher-yield returns in the limited source.
It is quite visible that there are really fewer numbers of farmers in the capital than the other states, but this project of betterment of agricultural activity will surely boost the process of cultivation and increase the number in the list.
Krishi Jagran/New Delhi