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Structure of the Essay:

Introduction:

You can start the introduction through following ways:

  • Start with a general introduction/anecdote/an example/a short story/a poem/a quote/a recent event or trend etc which can help in describing the need for self-reliance.
  • “If agriculture goes wrong, nothing else will have a chance to go right in our country”– Dr. M.S. Swaminathan,
  • Father of Indian Green Revolution “Most things, except agriculture, can wait.” – Jawahar Lal Nehru

Thesis Statement:

  • It is a transition statement between introduction and body of the essay.
  • In thesis statement, you should write outline of the body with your own arguments. You should prove these arguments in body of the essay with relevant examples.

Body of the essay:

  • Why there is agrarian distress- chronology and reasons
    • Three distinct phases can be identified in the evolution of agrarian relations in post-independence India. Reforms and consolidation during the 1950s and 1960s, the green revolution and popular development during the 1970s and 1980s, reforms and deterioration of the farmers conditions during the 1990s and later. Past strategy for development of agriculture sector in India focused primarily on raising the agricultural output and improving food security. This strategy involved (a) an increase in productivity through better technologies and varieties, and increased use of quality seed, fertilizer, irrigation and agrochemicals; (b) incentive structure in forms of remunerative prices for some crops and subsidies on farm inputs; (c) Public investments in and for agriculture; and (d) facilitating institutions. The strategy paid dividends as the country was able to address severe food shortage that emerged during 1960s. During the last half-century (1965 to 2015), since the adoption of green revolution, India’s food production has multiplied by 3.7 times while the population multiplied by 2.55 times. The net result has been a 45% increase in per capita food production which has made India not only food-sufficient but also a net food exporting country
  • Economic and Technological Strategy
    • One of the most popular and immediate solution is farm loan waiver. Farm loan waiver may provide temporary relief to farmers, but it is unlikely to resolve their problem on an enduring basis to the extent they continue to depend on non-institutional agencies to meet their financing requirement. Does farm loan waiver ensure equity among farming community? This is a debatable issue as rich farmers are eligible for higher farm loans than poor farmers as mentioned above. Marginal farmers and landless labourers, who are the poorest of the poor, are mostly out of the reach of bank loans. Hence, loan waiver is likely to benefit rich farmers more than poor ones. More damaging ramification of the farm loan waiver is that it distorts the credit culture. In anticipation of the loan waiver, farmers wilfully withhold repayments. While rich farmers have the wherewithal to continue farming activities in the next season without crop loans from banks, poor farmers cannot afford to do so within their means. Hence, it is observed that poor farmers are generally more regular in farm loan repayments while rich farmers hang on to outstanding farm loans in case of an impending loan waiver. Going by either the quantum of farm loan or by the repayment habit of farmers, indiscriminant loan waiver does not pass the test of equity unless rich farmers are excluded from the exercise. Hence loan waivers as have been done in past, is not a permanent solution.
  • Vision about modern agriculture:
    • Nearly everyone working on the future of modern agriculture is focused on efficiency. A wide range of technologies will enable the transition of modern agriculture in the field. Some technologies will need to be developed specifically for agriculture, while other technologies already developed for other areas could be adapted to the modern agricultural domain such as autonomous vehicles, artificial intelligence and machine vision. If modern agriculture is applied widely in the near future, millions of farmers will be able to benefit from the acquisition of real-time farm information. Farmers need not spend significant amount of time on acquiring farm data and will have access to disaster warnings and weather information when a disaster event occurs. It is difficult to predict the future of technology in agriculture but there are many promising trends and pilot projects.

Conclusion:

  • Mahatama Gandhi once said, “India lives in her villages”. And even after fast paced urbanization in India, the statement made by father of nation still holds true. According to the World Bank, rural population as percentage of total population was reported at 66.46 percent in 2017. And as we celebrated Gandhiji’s 150th birth anniversary last year, we are once again reminded that rural India needs to be accorded high priority to ensure sustainable growth and development of the country.
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