Agriculture Ministry to be renamed as Ministry of Agriculture& Farmers’ Welfare

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Seven decade-old Agriculture Ministry will be renamed as the Ministry for ‘Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare’ with a view to take care of farming community needs, Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced today. Addressing the nation on the 69th Independence Day, Modi stressed on the need to increase agricultural productivity and said the government is making efforts to boost crop yields. Emphasising on welfare of farmers for the overall growth of the agri-sector, he said the government will rename the present Agriculture Ministry as ‘Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Ministry’. Pre-independent India had a combined Department of Revenue, Agriculture and Commerce set up in June 1871. In 1881, the Department of Revenue and Agriculture was reconstituted as separate departments, but in 1923, the departments of Education and Health were combined with it to form the ‘Department of Eduction, Health and Lands’. In 1945, it was trifurcated into three separate departments of Agriculture, Education and Health. The Department of Agriculture was rededicated as Ministry of Agriculture in August 1947. At present, the Agriculture Ministry under Radha Mohan Singh is mandated to devise schemes to incentivise crop production, including by fixing the minimum support price for more than 20 crops. A separate ministry of consumer affairs, food and public distribution, headed by Union Minister Ram Vilas Paswan looks after procurement of foodgrains and their supplies through ration shops. Modi said the government is focusing on raising farm productivity, and providing electricity and irrigation to farmers. He said the Pradhan

Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana had been launched with an outlay of ₹50,000 crore. “We need to increase agricultural productivity and we are working in that direction,” he said, adding that focus should be on achieving “per drop, more crop”.

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