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Agricultural Techniques in India and the condition of farmers, Comment.

INDIA has been known to be an Agrarian country since centuries. Her great physiography, climate, latitude, etc. has led to the production of great varieties of food consumed.

Since ancient times, man has been practising agriculture and also other activities like the animal husbandry, poultry, etc. but the difference here is that he carried out 'Shifting Cultivation' until when the time came in that he learned to grow crops using different techniques on one same land only. This is how stability came into their life.

Agriculture has also been one of the major reasons for the British, French, Dutch, and Portuguese to come and settle down in India for years. But today the scenario has changed. Globalisation has brought in some positive and also some negative change within society and the activities. On one hand, the scope of agriculture has widened, while on other-its contribution to India's total national income has come down.

Historically over 80% land is suitable for raising crops but over 15% out of it has been laid waste by poor management practices. The frequent climatic changes taking place has caused damage and a great loss to the farmers wherein committing suicide is found to be the best solution to this problem for them. On the other side, some have found in new techniques and new varieties of crops as well. Due to growing population there is more need for food and due to urbanization there is more demand for land so producing more in less available and cultivable land is a great challenge.

Nowadays, Organic Farming, Vertical Farming, Multicrop Farming, Greenhouse Farming, Polytunnel or Polyhouse Farming, Terrace Farming, etc. are practised on a large scale.

Organic farming is an agricultural form that relies on Crop Rotation, Green Manure, Compost, Biological Pest Control and also Mechanical Cultivation. This helps to maintain soil quality and also limits use of synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. The growth of market for organic products since 1990, has led to the demand for organic farming.

Multi crop farming helps farmers to avail money from different types of crops and it also helps to enhance the fertility of the soil. This almost gives farmers an opportunity for continuous income.

While green house farming not being a that very new concept, has been used in nurseries, floriculture industry, etc. These farms help controlled and favourable environment for the crops to grow in all seasons and also reduces consumption of irrigation water. Low- cost, medium- cost and hi-tech green house are the different types of greenhouses found.

The Polyhouse or Polytunnel farming meaning cultivating crops under protected conditions has advantages and also disadvantages. Whereas terrace farming is mostly carried out in city area. India has thus been since years the largest producers of various agricultural products like Fresh Fruits, Jute, Cotton, Rice, Wheat, Groundnuts, Tea, Coffee, etc. etc.

The major problems of farmers have been large families that is the land is fragmented into small portions among the family members which reduces its productivity power and also less quantity gets produced. Seeds, excess use of fertilizers and pesticides, lack of irrigation method i.e less availability of proper water, lack of skills and mechanism, etc has also been reasons affecting farming and the farmers. There are also few economic related problems like inadequate transport, inadequate storage, scarcity of capital, agricultural marketing and much more.

The general stores selling every type of product are taking in all customers of the vendors selling their produce in general markets. This can also be considered as a reason for less price to agricultural produce sold in markets as compared to the price in malls or general stores.

For this scenario to be changed the farmers in India need to adopt new techniques, the government needs to give a good price for the farmers produce. There's a need for giving employment to people in an organised sector and also implementing properly the various policies planned and designed for the betterment of farmers. The farmers should be given opportunity to contribute in the planning for the policies for them as a person who has actual experience in this field can bring out better solutions than the one who has just seen it.

Vaishnavi Retharekar

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