(Dr. krishan Bir Chaudhary)
The corporates have started their game-plan to capture the agriculture sector. Policy drift and absence of a truly national policy on agriculture have thrown rural economy into disarray and may prove even more disastrous if the situation is not handled with deftness. Agrarian well being has been thrown at the mercy of market driven forces. It is outrageous and totally unacceptable.
Thinning out of the euphemistic smoke screen reveals the ugly face of the sinister design of the agri-business multinationals and corporate houses to cast their gripping hold on India's farmland. Colossal and enormous loss that will be inflicted by contract or corporate farming on our traditional agro-system, social-cultural ethos, growth factors, biodiversity and the eco-system is beyond comprehension, making it absolutely difficult to reverse the situation.
Sabotaging and dismantling a system that sustained the life and times of a vast majority of our polity and provided sustenance to the agro-rural segment of our society for centuries will usher India into a state of economic subjugation. Alluring unsuspecting simple farmers by eulogizing corporate farming as the panacea for their socio-economic emancipation, the corporate sector will fasten their grip on India's farmland, turning the source of sustenance and livelihood for the peasantry into a market driven entity.
It is highly erroneous to belittle its importance in India’s context which predominantly is an agricultural country. It is capable of strengthening and sustaining all round economic growth of the country even in times of worst of Industrial recession and stagnation that may come-up on account of unforeseen fluctuations in international trade. Agriculture in India still has enormous employment generation capability.
The decline in rural economy can be arrested only if the policies are made genuinely realistic and crafted out on participative basis by associating the stake holders and in complete consonance to suit their needs and aspirations. What actually needed is a strategic planning. To put it plainly, we can say that destabilization of our rural economy is a clear case of failure to evolve an strategy compatible to our needs.
Small and marginal farmers having less than two acres of land holding, facing various natural and man-made constraints, still manage to sustain their livelihood from their family farms. It is highly erroneous to think that market driven commercial venture like corporate farming can ever be trusted as a dependable source of a rewarding venture to the farmers. Diabolical policy on the issue will further debase the agro-rural segment and will be obliged to serve the interest of the MNC’s and the corporate sector.
Growth and development of agriculture should be all about sustainability, self sufficiency and self-reliance. But policies being pursued defies all logic and reflect cynicism that despite abundance of resources, India has been destined to become a food importing nation. Something seems to have seriously gone wrong.
There is urgent need for the policy makers to peep into the causes of failures and re-fixing of priorities by bringing agriculture in the center stage of economic growth and development, otherwise the way we are moving, nothing can check us from becoming a satellite nation.
(Editorial : Kisan Ki Awaaz Magazine)