Jaipur, The Chief Minister Smt. Vasundhara Raje said that agriculture and animal husbandry were very important sectors for the state's economy. The state government was committed for overall development of the farming and farmers. She said that the farmers' hard work had resulted in remarkable progress despite adverse circumstances for agriculture.
Smt. Raje was addressing a pre-budget consultation meeting with the Zila Pramukhs, farmers and representatives from the tribal region of the state. She said that the government was also making efforts so that farmers get better prices for their farm produce.
The Chief Minister said that Rajasthan had 10% geographical area of the country, while it had only 1 % of the total water resource. Keeping in view the importance of water, her previous government started giving 20% additional subsidy from the state funds for drip irrigation and took up this initiative as a mission. This resulted in Rajasthan being counted as a leading state for efficient use of water for irrigation, she added.
Smt. Raje informed that a group of farmers was sent to Israel for training in agriculture and horticulture techniques. This attracted the farmers towards agriculture, animal husbandry and protected farming. Now, the farmers were adopting innovative techniques every day, she pointed out.
The Chief Minister said that an International Horticulture Innovation and Training Centre had been established at Durgapura to get the farmers acquainted about new farming techniques. Through this, the farmers were being trained for use of greenhouses and protected farming. Production of flowers and vegetables had increased. Setting up of a Directorate for Floriculture too had been initiated, she observed.
Smt. Raje said that crop diversification gave good results in the form of production of olive and dates. This year an olive refinery too would be established in Bikaner. In Jaipur, a world-class olive nursery too had been set up, which would provide 3 lakh saplings to farmers on 75% subsidy, she stated.
The Chief Minister said that a Centre of Excellence for Vegetables and Flowers had been set up at Didhol village in Jaipur with the Isreali support. The state government had also done an innovative experiment by installing solar water pump-sets in government agriculture farms. This apart, Kisan Bhawans had been set-up to facilitate farmers at district headquarters. In agriculture produce markets Kisan Kaleva Yojna had been started to provide food at Rs 5 per plate, she informed.
Smt. Raje said that soil health improvement, promotion of certified seed production and use, water conservation and efficient and infrastructural improvement in agriculture were the priorities of the state government. With this view, the budget procedures had been made more inclusive. She called upon all the representatives to share their experiences and ideas of welfare to guide the state government in order to have special achievements in agriculture and animal husband
The Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Minister Shri Gulab Chand Kataria, Tribal Area Development Minister Shri Nand lal Meena, Agriculture Minister Shri Prabhulal Saini, Energy Minister Shri Gajendra Singh Khinvsar, Cooperatives Minister Shri Ajay Singh, Additional Chief Secretaries, Principal Secretaries and other senior officials were also present in the meeting. The Principal Secretary (Finance) Shri Subhash Garg proposed a vote of thanks.