Union Budget 2019-20: FM Nirmala Sitharaman holds pre-budget consultation on Agricultural, Rural Development
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman focussed on the measures to boost Economic and Social Infrastructure of Rural Sector and ways to eradicate unemployment and poverty through development of Agriculture and Allied Sectors as well as Non-Farm Sector.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today held first Pre-Budget Consultation on Agricultural and Rural Development for the forthcoming General Budget 2019-20. Stressing on measures to boost economic and social infrastructure of rural sector and ways to eradicate unemployment and poverty through development of agriculture and allied Sectors as well as non-farm sector, Sitharaman reiterates that the concerns of agriculture sector are high on the priority of the present government, according to a finance ministry statement.
In her opening remarks, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman focussed on the measures to boost Economic and Social Infrastructure of Rural Sector and ways to eradicate unemployment and poverty through development of Agriculture and Allied Sectors as well as Non-Farm Sector.
Sitharaman said the concerns of agriculture sector are high on the priority of the present government, therefore, she stressed on the representation of the different regions of the country so that their specific needs relating to these sectors can also be considered, said the statement.
She said that the Ministry will also hold broad based consultations with different stakeholders from fisheries sector to bring about blue revolution by optimally using our maritime resources, while stressing on encouraging start-ups which can remove the segmentation in agriculture market and help in providing remunerative markets for agriculture products and supplying it to the final consumers at reasonable prices.
According to the statement, the main areas of discussion during the meeting included agriculture research & extension services, rural development, non-farm sector, horticulture, food processing, animal husbandry, fisheries and start-ups in agricultural sector among others.
Representatives of agricultural and rural development sectors submitted various suggestions to boost investment in agricultural sector and enhance market access to farmers. Suggestions were given to improve food processing sector and introduction of technology-intensive processes in non-farm sector, said the statement, adding that tt also suggested that solar energy may be treated as third crop to augment income of farmers. Notably, suggestions for dairy sector were also submitted related to tax and duty structure and improving Prime Minister Krishi Sinchai Yojna (PMKSY).
Along with the FM, the meeting was attended by MoS for Finance and Corporate Affairs Anurag Thakur, Dr Ramesh Chandra, Member, NITI Aayog, Subhash C Garg, Finance Secretary, Girish Chandra Murmu, Expenditure Secretary, Ajay Narayan Pandey, Revenue Secretary, Rajeev Kumar, Secretary, DFS, Sanjay Agarwal, Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperation, Amarjeet Sinha, Secretary, Department of Rural Development, Dr Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary (DARE), Dr KV Subramanian, Chief Economic Advisor, Tarun Shridhar, Secretary, ADF, Ministry of Agriculture, Rajni Sekhri Sibal, Secretary, Department of Fishries, Pramod Chandra Mody, Chairperson, CBDT, along with other senior officials of the ministry of finance among others.