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Budget 2021 Update: Centre Committed to Farmers Welfare; Agri Credit Target Raised to Rs 16.5 Lakh Crore

Budget 2021 Latest Update: Here's what the government has announced for the farm sector.

Abha Toppo
Nirmala Sitharaman

Union Budget 2021 Live Updates: Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman has presented the budget 2021 in the Parliament today (1st February). The union budget comes at a time when the country is fighting with the Covid-19 pandemic and the economy is reeling under the aftereffects of the lockdown.

Amid the ongoing Kisan Andolan, the main challenge before the Government was to make some big announcements for the farmers.

While announcing the budget Sitharaman said that Government is committed to farmers’ welfare.

  • 54 crore farmers have been benefited from MSP in paddy and what in FY21 vs 1.24 crore YoY.

  • The amount paid to farmers for wheat in financial year 2021 was Rs 75,060 crore vs Rs 62,802 crore in FY20.

  • Meanwhile amount paid to growers for paddy in 2021 is around Rs 1.72 crore as compared to Rs 1.41 lakh crore in previous year

  • Amount given to the farmers for pulses in FY21 seen at Rs 10,530 crore as compared to Rs 8,285 crore in FY20

Agriculture Credit Target increased

Talking about the Agriculture Credit Target, FM said that the amount has been raised to Rs 16.5 Lakh Crore.

  • Centre has set agri credit target of Rs 16.5 lakh crore for FY2022

  • To increase provision to rural infra development fund to Rs 40,000 crore from Rs 30,000 crore

  • Micro Irrigation Fund has been increased to Rs 10,000 crore

  • Agri Infra Fund will be available to the APMCs

  • 5 major fishing harbours to be set up as hubs for economic activity

  • Multipurpose Seaweed Park to be launched in Tamil Nadu

86 percent beneficiaries covered Under One-Nation, One-Ration plan

  • One-nation, one-ration plan has been implemented by 32 states and UT.

  • 86% or 69 crore beneficiaries are covered under one-nation, one-ration plan

Agriculture Infrastructure & Development Cess imposed on specified goods

Centre will also impose an Agriculture Infrastructure & Development Cess (AIDC) on specified goods that includes cotton, peas, apple, alcoholic beverages etc.

Customs duty on cotton raised

In order to benefit farmers, the government has raised customs duty on cotton from 0 to 10% and on raw silk & silk yarn from 10% to 15%.

Reactions on budget 2021

Mr. D. Narain, Senior Bayer Representative, South Asia and CEO & MD, Bayer CropScience Limited says “2020 has been a year of exceptional and unprecedented challenges and has highlighted the critical importance of two core sectors, 'agriculture and healthcare'. The Union Budget 2021 has correctly called out the role of these two sectors in leading the nation’s recovery and being catalysts to sustainable growth. Higher allocations for both healthcare and agriculture with specific focus on building public health infrastructure, expansion of credit to farmers, additional allocation for rural infrastructure and micro irrigation are welcome moves. These initiatives complement actions already initiated to double farmers’ incomes and enabling wider healthcare access for the nation. At Bayer, our vision has always been, ‘Health for all, hunger for none’. With India striving to become a $10 trillion economy by 2027, we believe a collaborative approach in agriculture and healthcare will help bring transformative changes in our society.”

Mrs. Sandeepa Kanitkar, Chairperson and MD, Kan Biosys Pvt. Ltd said, “Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman laid out a moderate budget for agriculture. Focus is growth and stability in policy and reforms. Unlike expectations from the general public about the controversial farm reforms the budget was largely limited to de-stressing the MSME/industry to speed up growth. The budget focused more on the market side and did not have any large hiccups with respect to big budget reforms. The resilience of many sectors especially agriculture, markets and industry have been lauded. To conclude it was a budget which was laid out with lot of restraint and promoting areas which high growth potential and consumer potential. Government is trying to open up the economy by divesting assets and lay foundation for a good GDP growth. It also wants to have a stable budget for tax and policies. I feel accountability is going to be focused. Government would like growth to work for us.”

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