Need to rethink kind of crops grown in the country: Gajendra Singh Shekhawat

The country needed to rethink the type of crops that ought to be grown, Union Minister of Jal Shakti Gajendra Singh Shekhawat said on Tuesday.

Addressing the 9th Agrochemicals Conference organised by FICCI, the minister lamented that sugarcane is additionally being overproduced, leading to overproduction of sugar.

Corporate investments are required in agriculture and water, especially in areas of post-harvest management, food processing and provide chain management, Shekhawat said.

According to the minister, India is claimed to possess the smallest amount productive water usage within the world. Around 5,600 litres of water is required to grow 1 kg of paddy or rice, while the remainder of the planet achieves an equivalent in 350 litres, he said, underlining the necessity for efficient irrigation systems. The typical landholding has been squeezed to at least one acre and, therefore, FPCs were conceptualised to proportion agriculture, he said.

The minister said India’s underground water resources were stressed. India draws up 25% of the world’s water, which is 1.5 times quite the water drawn by USA and China, he said. “The country’s underground water resources aren’t infinite, and awareness among people is low. Therefore, the country must diversify to crops that guzzle less water, to minimise water needs which will have grown thanks to pesticide use, and an entire revision of thinking of what crops to supply and that markets to supply ,” he said.

The ministry is currently performing on water mapping. it’s identified the six most stressed places for a pilot programme under the Atal Bhujal Yojana, being run with the planet Bank for an estimated Rs 6,000 crore, he said.

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