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A television channel dedicated to farmers

“Dukh bhare din bite re bhaiya, sukh din ayo re, rang jeevan main naya layo re”. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has taken a right step to start a television channel for the farmers. The timing of the launch of the channel coincides with the completion of one year of Modi government at the centre fulfilling a long standing need of having a channel fully devoted to the peasants. DD Kisan would cater to the needs of rural India. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said that the channel would be very useful to farmers as it would carry weather forecasts several times a day and other crucial information to the peasants, in addition to entertainment programmes.

The channel will enable the government to connect with the farmers. The channel is also expected to talk about government campaigns such as Beti Bachao, Beti Padhao on improving the sex ratio and Modi’s govt’s schemes like Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan and Namami Gange. Modi said the country cannot move forward without farmer’s progress and called for increase in crop productivity by 50 percent. He added that if India has to develop it’s villages need to progress. He spoke about various issues pertaining to the welfare of farmers but failed to mention about the controversial Land Acquisition Bill. Modi called for augmenting the agricultural production across the nation. The Prime Minister said the DD Kisan channel should keep an eye on and inform farmers about the changes in weather, global markets etc., so they can plan ahead and take the right decisions well in time. This is a good move as far as it is aimed at silencing the critics and offsetting “Soot boot sarkar” stigma. To some extent yes, it will help in disseminating the knowledge about new techniques of farming and irrigation to enhance farm production. The government has at last realized that land mass is not going to increase.

What many people do not realize is that the family of the farmer won’t watch this channel too much and instead they will view entertainment channels. Krishi Mitra, other officials and students from agriculture colleges impart training to farmer in the field. The supervision of this programme is undertaken by Tahsildar and the District magistrate. Few weeks back, I said that the most important officer on ground level is the District magistrate and the government needs to empower him and keep a track of his work instead of looking at what he wears. The government will probably realize this after one more year.

Testing soil quality, providing the right fertilizer, augmenting water supply, setting up cold storages and godowns for preserving the produce and offering remunerative price to the farmer must be undertaken at a regular basis. It is also necessary to reclaim the barren land and make it fertile for agricultural purposes.

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