1. Agriculture World

Tamil Nadu Govt. To Form 2 Special Zones to Enhance Millet Output

Presenting the Agriculture Budget for 2022-23 in the state Assembly on Saturday, Panneerselvam said to increase production of millet, two Millet Special Zones will be set up under the Tamil Nadu Millet Mission.

Ayushi Raina
Two Millet Special Zones will be established under the Tamil Nadu Millet Mission to improve millet output
Two Millet Special Zones will be established under the Tamil Nadu Millet Mission to improve millet output

According to M.R.K. Panneerselvam, Minister for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Tamil Nadu government will establish two millet special zones to boost millet cultivation by the farmers in the state.

Panneerselvam, who presented the Agriculture Budget for 2022-23 in the state Assembly on Saturday, stated that two Millet Special Zones will be established under the Tamil Nadu Millet Mission to improve millet output.

The districts of Tiruvannamalai, Salem, Kallakurichi, Villupuram, Cuddalore, Dharmapuri, Krishnagiri, and Vellore would be covered by one zone, and Thoothukudi, Virudhunagar, Madurai, Tenkasi, Ramnathapuram, Sivagangai, Theni, Trichy, Karur, DindigulAriyalur, and Perambaluras the second zone.

He said millets are minuscule in appearance, but highly nutritious for strengthening the body. To support this idea, the United Nations General Assembly declared 2023 the "International Year of Millets," he said.

He stated that "Millet Festivals" will be held at the state and district levels to raise awareness about the importance of millet nutrition.

Farmers will be encouraged to participate in activities spanning from crop farming to value-added marketing of their products. This scheme would be implemented with a total budget of Rs.92 crore from both the Union and State Government funds.

"The state government will take steps to support 500 marginal farmers at a cost of Rs.1 crore to encourage millet production and consumption among Self Help Groups under Tamil Nadu State Rural Livelihood Mission," Panneerselvam said.

According to him, special schemes will be implemented to popularize the cultivation of millets and pulses as an alternative to water-intensive crops.

To mitigate the impact of climate change, the government would encourage crop diversification and the cultivation of millets.

To attain self-sufficiency in pulse production, the districts of Krishnagiri, Dharmapuri, Tiruvannamalai, and Salem would constitute a Special Redgram Zone.

Processing, value addition, and marketing of collected pulses will be undertaken. This scheme will be implemented at an outlay of Rs.60 crore, during 2022-23, with Union and State Government funds, Panneerselvam said.

The Tamil Nadu government would also take steps to increase paddy output in an area of 19 lakh hectares during 2022-23 by implementing a Strategic Paddy Cultivation Program with an allocation of Rs.32.48 crore from Union and State government funds.

In terms of crop insurance, Panneerselvam stated that a sum of Rs.2399 crore has been allocated as the state's share of premium subsidy in 2022-23.

According to him, a total of Rs.2055 crore has been paid out to 9.26 lakh farmers as crop insurance claims for the fiscal year 2020-21.

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