New Delhi: During the last three years and the current year Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR)/ National Agricultural Research System (NARS) has taken initiatives for innovation/ development of new technologies in the farm sector across the country like Genetic enhancement of plants/ animals/ fish for higher productivity under increased intensity of biotic and abiotic stresses, productivity enhancement through sustainable intensification, productivity enhancement through mechanization of agriculture and food system, enhancing value, safety and income through food processing, development of energy efficient technologies, farming practices, and promoting technology transfer to the farmers and stake holders.
During the last nine years (2014-2022), a total of 2122 varieties have been released of food crops, oil seeds, pulses, commercial crops, horticultural crops, potential crops and fodder crops which has not only stabilized the production but also increased the productivity and production of food grains in India besides other production and protection technologies.
NARS coordinated at the apex level by the ICAR/ Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE), comprises of 98 Agricultural Research Institutes, 5 Deemed Universities and 3 Central Agricultural Universities besides 63 State Agricultural Universities, 4 Universities with Agriculture Faculties mandated for developing, testing and refining new technologies in agriculture sector.
To provide information about these developed technologies to the farmers, Government has established a network of 731 Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) at district level which are coordinated by 11 Agricultural Technology Application and Research Institute (ATARI). The KVKs are mandated to provide information about new technologies developed in agriculture sector to the farmers.
The major activities undertaken by the KVKs include on-farm testing of location-specificity of technologies under various farming systems; frontline demonstrations to establish the production potential of improved agricultural technologies on the farmers’ field; capacity development of farmers for knowledge and skill upgradation; providing farm advisories on varied subjects of interest to farmers using ICT and other tools; production and distribution of quality seeds, planting materials and other technological inputs to farmers.
Besides, Government is also implementing a centrally sponsored scheme namely Agricultural Technology Management Agency (ATMA) which aims at making available the latest agricultural technologies in different thematic areas to increase agricultural production through extension activities viz.
Farmers Training, Demonstrations, Exposure Visits, Kisan Mela, Mobilization of Farmers Groups and Setting up of Farm Schools. During the last three years and the current year training of 62.99 lakhs farmers, 1.49 lakhs On-farm trials and 10.29 lakhs field level demonstrations were conducted by the KVKs and ICAR Institutes.
A dedicated portal of PM-KISAN was launched on 06.02.2019 and has been hosted as www.pmkisan.gov.in. The PM-KISAN Portal provides verified and single source of truth on farmers’ details; Timely assistance to the farmers in farm operation; A unified e-platform for transferring of cash benefits into farmer’s bank account through PFMS integration; Location wise availability of benefited farmers list; and Ease of monitoring across the country on fund transaction details and many other facilities are available in the portal.
The total farmers benefited by this portal is more than 12.0 crores. Another portal i.e. mKishan has unique features like database to shift farmers down to Block level & to select specific agricultural commodities/ animal/ poultry/ fish, rating/ correction of messages by the supervisory officers, searchable database of previous advisories. Since inception, total 5,13,76,458 farmers were benefitted.
The available technologies are disseminated through training programmes, Front Line Demonstrations (FLD), On-field Demonstrations (OFD), skill development programs, supplying literatures and handouts to the farmers and farm women, rural youth and in-service extension personnel.
These activities are carried out by different agencies and schemes of the Government like Krishi Vigyan Kendra, ATMA (Agricultural Technology Management Agency), National Food Security Mission (NFSM), Rastriya Krishi VikasYojna (RKVY), Sub-Mission of Seeds and Planting Material (SMSP), Seed Hubs (Pulses, Oilseeds, Millets), Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) and are implemented by State Governments, ICAR Institutes and Central/State Agricultural Universities. The KVKs and the ICAR Institutes in last three years trained more than 62.99 lakhs farmers.
This information was given by the Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar in a written reply in Lok Sabha today.