Rural sector in FY17: Building roads falls far short of target

As the finance minister gears up to present the Union Budget for the new financial year, Business Standard scans the 2016-17 Budget speech for a status check on key rural and farm sector announcements made by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley last year and assesses how much has been achieved.

Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana – 2.85 million hectares to be brought under irrigation under this scheme

Status: Major components of the scheme were transferred to the water resources ministry mid-way in the financial year and it was made the nodal ministry for monitoring the scheme. The Per-Drop More Crop component of the scheme, which dealt with micro and drip irrigation, remained with the ministry of agriculture. During 2016-17, funds allocated for this component of the scheme were Rs 2,340 crore with a target of bringing over 800,000 hectares under micro irrigation. Of this, Rs 1,512.65 crore has been released to the state till December 2016. Area brought under Per Drop More Crop is 236,000 hectares. Till December, over 1.3 million hectares have been brought under PMKSY.

Soil Health Card Scheme – target is to cover all 140 million farm holdings by March

Status: Against a target of 25.3 million soil samples collection by March, by December 23.3 million had been collected. Based on those, 128.2 million soil health cards are being made Union Budget. Of these, 43.1 million soil health cards have been printed and 42.5 million have been distributed to farmers and remaining are under process.

Parmparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana – to bring 500,000 acres under organic farming over three years

Status: Till December 2016, state governments had made 9,186 clusters, of which 8,000 had been made in 2015-16. Each cluster covers around 20 hectares. Assuming that 9,186 clusters are operational, an area of 190,000 hectares has been covered under organic farming till December 2016. The first year target was to cover 200,000 hectares.

To launch Unified Agricultural Marketing E-Platform

Status: The platform was launched and 250 mandis of 10 states have been integrated with e-NAM Portal. As of December 3.5 million tonnes of agriculture produce worth Rs 7,131.21 crore has been transacted on e-NAM platform.

Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY) gets a much higher allocation of Rs 19,000 crore in 2016-17. The goal was to advance the completion target of the programme from 2021 to 2019 and connect the remaining 65,000 eligible habitations by constructing 223,000 km of roads.

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Rural sector in FY17: Building roads falls far short of target

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