Centre’s policies dampening agriculture growth: KCR

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Hyderabad, April 19 (IANS) Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Tuesday expressed unhappiness over the regressive farm policies adopted by the Central government.

He said that the Centre’s policies are dampening the agriculture growth of the country which relies on farming as the main occupation.

The Chief Minister said that it is unfortunate that the union government’s haphazard policies are discouraging the farmers from continuing the farming and also reduced the farm output in the country.

He, however, made clear that despite facing hurdles, the state government will strive to consolidate the agriculture sector. The chief minister reiterated that the action plan for the welfare of farmers will be strengthened further.

In view of the ensuing Vaanakalam (Kharif season) which is to begin in a few months , the Chief Minister instructed agriculture minister Niranjan Reddy to make all necessary arrangements in advance.

He suggested Cotton, Chilli, Red Gram, Watermelon and other alternative crops.

KCR, as Rao is popularly known, held a high level review on the availability of fertilizers, seeds and the agriculture department’s readiness.

He also enquired about the progress in the paddy procurement. The officials have been asked to prepare a special action plan on profit-making crops.

The Chief Minister instructed the top officials to depute the district officers and village level officials and Agriculture Extension officers for ground level visits and give suggestions to the farmers on the cropping pattern.

He noted that the weather conditions in Telangana are conducive to the agriculture sector. As the India Meteorological Department predicted that the state will receive bountiful rains, he hoped that the growth in the farm sector will be encouraging this year.

He said in Telangana, the contribution of the farm sector to the GSDP is 21 per cent and recalled that the sector was completely neglected in the united Andhra Pradesh. The farm sector is playing a key role in the strengthening of the state economy.

KCR said that the extension of Pranahitha and Kaleshwaram is under progress and all the projects taken up by the state government will be completed in a year’s time.

The question of drought in agriculture would not arise in the future and it is imperative that the state agriculture department should be vibrant, fast and always busy, the chief minister advised the officials and the minister.

KCR instructed the officials to prepare a district action plan to strengthen the farm sector by involving district Collectors and RDOs.

The Chief Minister asserted to reduce the indiscriminate use of fertilizers. He asked the officials to educate the farmers about the scientific methods in the use of fertilizers. The soil health is deteriorating due to excess use of pesticides and fertilizers.

The Chief Minister expressed concern on the repeated farming of single crops for years which caused the spoiling of the soil health. The need of the hour is to adopt alternative cropping to protect soil quality, he said, and asked the officials to prepare required plans in this direction also.

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