With elections around the corner, it’s too late for a course correction of the farm sector, but it’s an opportune time to document the unintended consequences of half-baked policies for the next five years. Otherwise, the momentum of existing policies will continue to feed rural economic misery.
Agriculture GDP growth plummeted just as India’s agricultural trade surplus, which had recorded a 10x increase between 1991-92 and 2013-14, fell by 70 per cent, mainly due to depressed international commodity prices and back-to-back droughts. The GDP time-series data clearly indicates growth was already declining when UPA II passed the baton to the present regime. Therefore, not all the blame can be heaped on this government. But it’s equally true that the response of those directing the agriculture policy to the dire circumstances not only created a credibility crisis for the government, but aggravated the problem on every farm. As a consequence, farmer suicides continue unabated.
Credits:The Indian Express.
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