The Department of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare (DA&FW) is implementing the Crop Diversification Programme (CDP), a sub-scheme of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY) in the original green revolution states such as Haryana, Punjab and Western Uttar Pradesh since 2013-14 to divert the area of water-intensive paddy crop to alternative crops like pulses, oilseeds, coarse cereals, nutri-cereals, cotton among low water consuming crops, Union Minister of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar said in a written reply in the Lok Sabha today.
In addition, Government of India is also supplementing the efforts of state governments to encourage diversified production of crops such as pulses, coarse cereals, nutri cereals, cotton and oilseeds under National Food Security Mission (NFSM) and horticultural crops under Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH). Government of India also provide flexibility to the states for state-specific needs/priorities under RKVY. The state can promote crop diversification under RKVY with the approval of State Level Sanctioning Committee (SLSC) headed by the chief secretary of the state, the minister further said.
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The Government is implementing a scheme on ‘Promotion of Agricultural Mechanization for In-Situ Management of Crop Residue in the States of Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and National Capital Territory (NCT) of Delhi’during 2021-22. At present, the Government has approved the continuation of the scheme upto September 30, 2022 during 2022-23. Under the scheme, financial assistance is provided to the farmers for purchase of identified crop residue management machinery and to the cooperative societies of farmers, farmers producers organisations (FPOs), registered farmer societies and panchayats for the establishment of custom hiring centres (CHCs) of identified crop residue management machinery. Financial assistance is also provided to the state governments, Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs), Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) institutions, Central government institutions and public sector undertakings (PSUs) for Information, Education and Communication (IEC) activities for creating awareness on crop residue management. ICAR has developed Pusa Decomposer, a microbial consortium of fungal species (both in liquid and capsule forms) for the rapid decomposition of paddy straw. The use of this consortium accelerates the process of paddy straw decomposition in the field itself, the agriculture minister further informed the lower house of the Indian parliament.