Question : Agricultural Education

(a) whether the Government has formulated or propose to formulate a scheme to attract young persons to adopt agriculture as a profession and to retain them in agriculture;

(b) if so, the details thereof;

(c) whether it is a fact that most of the farmers in the country have lack of access to both technology and knowledge about advanced methods of farming;

(d) if so, the schemes implemented by the Government for providing agricultural education to the farmers;

(e) the number of farmers which have been provided education under these schemes during the last three years, State-wise; and

(f) the steps taken by the Government to increase the coverage of farmers under these schemes?

Answer given by the minister


(a) & (b): Realizing the importance of rural youth in agricultural development, Government has initiated a programme on “Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture”. The objectives of ARYA project are (i) To attract and empower the Youth in Rural Areas to take up various Agriculture, allied and service sector enterprises for sustainable income and gainful employment in selected districts, (ii) to enable the Farm Youth to establish network groups to take up resource and capital intensive activities like processing, value addition and marketing, and (iii) To demonstrate functional linkage with different institutions and stakeholders for convergence of opportunities available under various schemes/program for sustainable development of youth. ARYA project will be

implemented in 22 States through KVKs, one district from each State. In one district, 200-300 rural youths will be identified for their skill development in entrepreneurial activities and establishment of related micro-enterprise units. The trained youth groups will function as role model for other youths and will demonstrate the potentiality of the agri-based enterprises and also give training to other farmers. In the project district, rural youths will be identified for their skill development in entrepreneurial activities and establishment of related micro-enterprise units in the area of Apiary, Mushroom, Seed Processing, Soil testing, Poultry, Dairy, Goatry, Carp-hatchery, Vermi-compost etc., KVKs will involve the Agricultural Universities and ICAR Institutes as Technology Partners. The purpose is to establish economic models for youth in the villages in the area of agriculture, allied and service sector enterprises for sustainable income through self employment.
(c) to (f): A number of institutional mechanisms are in place to make farmers aware of the researches, technologies and best practices generated by ICAR Institutes, Agricultural Universities (AUs). The ICAR institutes are regularly conducting nationwide Front Line Demonstrations (FLDs), on and off farm trainings, skill development programme, improved technology demonstrations including varieties/hybrids in pursuit of technology transfer and to create awareness amongst the farmers for adopting improved scientific packages and practices to enhance the farm productivity and production.

Government of India, has launched a ‘National Mission on Agriculture Extension & Technology (NMAET)’ with effect from 01.04.2014. Sub-Mission on Agriculture Extension (SMAE) is one of the four Sub-missions of the NMAET. Under SMAE efforts are being made to educate farmers and youths by providing updated knowledge and information related to agriculture & allied sectors through various initiatives viz. Support to State Extension Programmes for Extension Reforms (ATMA), Mass Media Support for Agriculture Extension (MMSAE), Setting up of Agri-Clinic & Agri-Business Centres (ACABC), Kisan Call Centres & Organization of Agricultural Fairs and exhibitions. New ICT initiatives include sending SMS/advisories to farmer on their mobile phones. Massive awareness generation and educating farmers is already on through Fairs, Field Visits, Farm Schools, Demonstrations in agriculture as well as all allied sectors at Block & District level under ATMA Scheme which is operational in 652 districts of the country. A Doordarshan Channel in the name DD Kisan has been rolled out recently which exclusively broadcast information related to agriculture and allied activities. Department of Agriculture & Cooperation, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare (Govt. of India) has also brought out a Farmer Friendly handbook carrying details of assistance available for farmers under various Schemes/ Programmes/Mission. This booklet is available on the website in different languages. The State-wise number of farmers educated/trained by different farmer oriented activities is given in Annexure-I and achievements of various activities under the KVK scheme during the last three years is given in Annexure-II.

In addition to increase the coverage of farmers, various extension activities like Field Days, Kisan Gosthies, Exhibitions, Farmers fair/Seminars, Demonstrations, Group Meetings, Awareness Campaigns on different areas of farmers’ needs, Soil test / health campaigns, Exposure visits, Diagnostic visits, Scientists’ visits to farmers’ fields etc. involving the farmers of the locality are carried out.

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