NEW DELHI: A RSS affiliated science organisation has suggested that research should be carried to study the possible links between pesticide, fertilizer usage and their impacts on health. It asked the government that the agricultural scientists and health professional be involved to conduct studies.
The Vijnana Bharati, a RSS body, in its resolution adopted at Hyderabad recently formulated a number of proposals which it had submitted to the government.
It also suggested that traditional agriculture and integrated approach needs to be introduced as part of the curriculum of agricultural education as well as mandate for research.
“Agri- business and secondary agriculture should be included as one of the mandates of ICAR institutes. Even agricultural extension should have counselling at least up to the district level,” the suggestions submitted to the government said.
The RSS body added that the whole chain of agricultural marketing including warehousing and transportation needs to be revamped and reasonable pricing ensured for the farmer. “This calls for fundamental changes in APMC as well as Essential Commodities act,” it added.
The science body which has some of the senior scientists working with it favoured that traditional knowledge system should be encouraged. “The region wise approach to crop pattern and land use need to be evolved with due consideration to traditional agricultural practices,” one of the recommendation added.
“Currently, nearly 61 Crore Indians are dependent on agriculture for their livelihoods, though the component of agriculture in our GDP is steadily coming down. But it is highly satisfying that despite all the odds, Indian agriculture today is able to feed 125 Crore Indians,” the RSS body added said that crisis needs to be handled with a multipronged strategy which includes increased support to farmers in the form irrigation, new technologies, timely funding and availability of seeds, education and extension, improved irrigation with added focus on micro irrigation, optimization of fertilizer application, encouraging multicropping, ancillary Agrobased industries, other secondary agriculture and counseling.
It argued that unplanned migration towards cash crops has significantly contributed to the present crisis. “A time has come to comprehensively review the crop and land use pattern across the country. A thorough review of our experience with GM crops involving all stake holders like farmers and scientists, especially of Bt Cotton, of the past few years will be timely. The potential for organic farming need to be explored fully,” it added.