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AAP: Change farming methods to tide over crisis

MYSURU: The Karnataka unit of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Thursday argued that switching to intensive crop farming will help tide over Cauvery water-related crisis and help people in urban areas, including Bengaluru, get drinking water.   According to the party, 65% of Cauvery water is used for irrigation, whereas globally the share of agriculture in water use in a river basin is 20-30%. "If we make agriculture even slightly more water-efficient, we need not to worry about shortage of drinking water for a long time," it argued. Bengaluru uses 4% of Cauvery water, while other urban areas use another 4%. Five centuries...

Last Updated: Friday, 9th September, 2016 05:46 PM Visits 111

Assam tea Industry under pressure due to rising costs, price stagnation

KOLKATA: The Assam tea Industry for the last few years is under pressure due to the rising costs of production and stagnant prices. The spiralling cost of production (CoP) due to rising input costs and employment costs continues to pose a challenge for the organised sector.   An analysis of the last 10 years reveals that tea prices has not been able to keep pace with the inflationary trends which have put considerable pressure on margins. Input costs during this period have increased at a Compounded Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of more than 10 per cent per annum while tea prices have...

Last Updated: Wednesday, 7th September, 2016 05:45 PM Visits 104

Genetically Modified mustard gets scientific nod, safe tag from green ministry

NEW DELHI: The Environment ministry has put in public domain the risk assessmentreport on Genetically Modified Mustard- the report categorically states that the variety does not "pose any risk of causing any adverse effects on human and animal health and safety".   The issue of allowing genetically modified crops in India has been a rather controversial and politically sensitive one with many activists and farmer groups strongly opposed to it on grounds of such crops allegedly causing huge adverse impacts on human and animal health.   The issue is particularly tricky for the Modi government with RSS aligned groups like Swadeshi Jagran Manch...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 6th September, 2016 05:44 PM Visits 96

NABARD to raise Rs 77,000 crore to fund irrigation projects

NEW DELHI: The National Bank of Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) will raise in phases over Rs 77,000 crore from market to fund around 100 prioritised irrigation projects, including 56 in drought-prone areas, under the Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKYS) over the next four years.   Union Minister Uma Bharti made the announcement during the signing ceremony of a memorandum of agreement (MoA) between the Ministry of Water Resourcesand NABARD for raising a long-term irrigation fund (LTIF) of Rs 20,000 crore.   To a question, a senior official said the remaining Rs 57,000 crore would be raised through NABARD in case states...

Last Updated: Tuesday, 6th September, 2016 05:44 PM Visits 106

"We are raising around Rs 13,000 crore shortly from the market," Bhanwal said.Costly labour boosts farm machine sales

Across the world, farm machinery outsells tractors two to one, but the availability of abundant and cheap labour has confined farm mechanisation in India to tractors, largely. That's changing now as village youths head for the cities to find better paying work in services and factories.   Experts say the shortage of farm labour and its rising cost are among the main reasons for increasing mechanisation of Indian farming. "This is not restricted to pockets but spread all across," said T R Kesavan, chairman of the technical committee and immediate past president of Tractor Manufacturers' Association. While tractors still outsell other farm...

Last Updated: Monday, 5th September, 2016 05:43 PM Visits 90

August rain deficit 8.5%, but won’t affect agriculture

  NEW DELHI: Contrary to expectations, rainfall across the country was 8.5% less than normal in August, with the monsoon system weakening in the second half of the month, particularly in south India and the northeast.   The shortfall in August has affected the overall monsoon. As on Thursday, the season's cumulative rainfall stood at 2% below the long period average, making it unlikely that the meteorological department's "above normal" monsoon forecast for this year would be realized.   However, the weak turn in monsoon is unlikely to affect the agricultural output of the country as a whole, as bountiful rains in July and early...

Last Updated: Friday, 2nd September, 2016 05:39 PM Visits 117

Food minister Ram Vilas Paswan says retail prices of pulses will fall soon

NEW DELHI: Food and consumer affairs minister Ram Vilas Paswan said that wholesale prices of pulses are falling and consumers may also get to benefit soon. He said the government will step in to start procuring pulses from farmers in cases where the prices are being quoted below the minimum support price, beginning with moong.   "Due to the government's efforts, pulses' prices are correcting. Some pulses, like moong, are selling below the minimum support price. You will soon see a price correction in retail markets," Paswan said on Thursday, speaking on the sidelines of industry lobby Ficci's sixth annual convention on...

Last Updated: Friday, 2nd September, 2016 05:38 PM Visits 130

Keep Agriculture Ministry in loop on commodity matters: Cabinet Secretariat

NEW DELHI: The Cabinet Secretariat has asked Ministries to not bypass theAgriculture Ministry while bringing Cabinet proposals related to macroeconomics, trade and commerce.   In a note to all Secretaries on August 30, the Cabinet Secretariat has sent this missive. "It has been observed that in some cases, on issues related to macroeconomics, trade and commerce, sometimes the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare is not consulted even though the matter or commodity relates to the Agriculture sector. Accordingly, it may be ensured that the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare is invariably consulted in all matters related to the Agriculture sector....

Last Updated: Thursday, 1st September, 2016 05:37 PM Visits 116