Livelihoods News

India’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the second quarter (Q2) has laid bare the deepening distress in its villages. Farm incomes haven’t risen even though the government has announced a hike in minimum support prices. The country’s agricultural output, measured as gross value added, grew at a sedate pace of 2.8%, far slower than the 5.3% in the June quarter. This was on top of a low base of 2.6% growth last year.

NAGPUR: Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh on Friday denied claims that demonetisation prevented farmers from purchasing seeds.

Some media reports had claimed that a report by the Agriculture Ministry conceded that farmers could not buy seeds due to the cash crunch in the wake of note-ban in November 2016.

Almost two decades ago, golden rice was termed as a revolutionary solution to check vitamin A deficiency but a new report says that commercialising the genetically-modified (GM) rice turned out to be a dud.

Brazil, traditionally the world’s top sugar producer, is poised to cede the crown to India for the first time in 16 years.

Production in the Asian country this season may rise 5.2% to a record 35.9 million metric tonnes on increasing acreage and improving yields, the US Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service said Tuesday in a report. Brazil’s output may tumble 21% to 30.6 million tonnes because of adverse weather and a shift to produce more cane-based ethanol.

Bid to reach out to private sector

In a bid to encourage employers, especially in the private sector, to implement the extended 26-week maternity leave law, the Labour Ministry plans to refund them for seven weeks’ worth of wages for women workers with a wage ceiling up to Rs. 15,000 per month. The Ministry is in the process of getting budgetary approvals for the Rs. 400 crore incentive scheme, according to an official statement.

Poor implementation

NEW DELHI: The Uttar Pradesh government will give 10,000 solar pumps for irrigation purpose to farmers at up to 70% subsidy on a first come-first serve basis this fiscal, state agriculture minister Surya Pratap Shahi said on Thursday.

Solar energy-driven pump set is an emerging alternative of electrical and diesel pump systems in farm irrigation.

India’s economic growth is expected to continue in the coming decades, bringing with it increased per capita GDP and improved standards of living. India’s population is also projected to reach 1.6 billion by as early as 2036. The higher population and incomes are likely to come with not only increased demand for food but also higher demand for food from animal products, along with generation of more waste.

Insurance companies across the country earned a whopping Rs 15,795 crore as profit in two years from the Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY), according to a reply received under the Right to Information Act.

While the farmers’ wait for increase in income continues, the profit of insurance firms increased by one-and-a-half times in just one year of the introduction of the PMFBY.

Chennai: On November 15, the cyclonic storm Gaja will make its landfall across the Tamil Nadu coast between Cuddalore and Pamban. Heavy rainfall and wind will also be unleashed on the state along with the cyclone and as many as 30,500 rescue personnel have been kept on standby, as per the Met office.

More than half the poorest of India’s poor, entitled to monthly doles, have not had their Aadhaar details verified with the authorities, prompting the Centre to push the states to bridge the gap in a “mission mode”.