Need for synergy between govt & private sector in exchanging information.
Union Agriculture Secretary Manoj Ahuja has advised corporates to have a common understanding and desire to strengthen the agriculture sector, emphasizing the need for synergy between government and private sector in exchanging information.
‘A lot of information is accessible, but it is scattered. Something belongs to the government and something to the private sector. Can we pool our resources to serve everyone?’ ‘A lot of individuals are conducting crop estimations; can we share this information so that we have better results?’ Ahuja said on Tuesday, at the start of a seminar on the scope of Public-Private Partnership (PPP) in agriculture, hosted by the industry association FICCI.
The Food Ministry got different comments on wheat production forecasts in 2022 than the Agriculture Ministry did. Though the official estimate of wheat output is 106.41 million tonnes (mt), a decrease from the earlier expectation of 111.32 mt, the private sector believes it will be no more than 100 mt. The humiliation the government had when the export prohibition on wheat was imposed a day after it was stated that a team would travel to nine nations to increase the grain’s export may be gauged.
‘Even the Food Corporation of India (FCI) might have planned better to boost procurement if it had been informed of the large drop in output in advance. There is a need not just for stronger collaboration with the business sector, but also for increased deployment of technology, particularly drones, to estimate agricultural yield,’ said a former agriculture secretary.
‘Being in government, we may play the role of a conductor in a symphony orchestra, Ahuja remarked, pointing out that numerous participants are operating in silos. Can we create synergy and collaborate?’
Simple solutions are required
The Secretary went on to say that it is critical for farmers to have access to accessible and simple answers to their concerns through digital platforms. ‘It would be advantageous for farmers if we could deliver these technological solutions via a shared open-source,’ Ahuja added.
He also said that the government hopes to have ‘frameworks’ for scaling up interventions in the agriculture sector and asked for thoughts on whether agro programs might be integrated to make things realistic.
In her speech, Vijaya Lakshmi Nadendla, a joint secretary in the Agriculture Ministry, said that the four crucial ‘I’s for policy framework are inputs, infrastructure, investment, and institutions. ‘The business sector can pitch in and give crucial agricultural investment,’ she remarked.
However, Pravesh Sharma, Chairman of the FICCI task group on FPOs, said that agriculture is virtually entirely privately held. The policy framework created by the government has a significant influence on how capital flow into agriculture, markets function, and technology is implemented.