STATE OF MARGINAL FARMERS OF INDIA (Syllabus: GS Paper 3 – Economy)

News-CRUX-10     26th June 2024        
Samadhaan

Context: According to the State of Marginal Farmers of India 2024 survey, over 50% of marginal farmers have reported losing at least half of their standing crops due to severe weather conditions.


Key findings of Report

  • Participant Demographics: A total of 6,615 marginal farmers participated, selected from a pan-India panel.
  • Survey Methodology: The survey began in 2023, using tele-calling to select respondents based on landholding size from 21 states.
  • Definition of Marginal Farmer: Marginal farmers, as per government records, hold up to 1 hectare of agricultural land for farming activities.
  • Impact of Extreme Weather: Over the past five years, a higher percentage of farmers are experiencing significant crop losses compared to previous extreme weather events.
  • Crop-Specific Losses: Significant crop loss percentages were reported: 50% of paddy farmers and over 40% of wheat farmers consistently lost more than half of their crops.
  • Government Initiatives:

oRole of PMFBY: The Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana (PMFBY) supported agricultural resilience, with approximately 35% of surveyed marginal farmers enrolled.

oRole of PMKSNY: About 83% of surveyed farmers received government grants or subsidies, primarily through the Kisan Samman Nidhi.

  • Cold Storage Accessibility: 69% of farmers lacked cold storage facilities within 10 km, while 15% had access but never used them.

o27% of households accessed bank loans in the past, according to surveyed farmers.

  • Recommendations: The study proposed strategies like reservoir buffering and groundwater recharge through check dams and watersheds to enhance agricultural water resilience.

State of Marginal Farmers of India 2024

  • About: This report is focused on rapid understanding of the state of marginal farmers in India.
  • Released by: Development Intelligence Unit (DIU), a collaborative enterprise of Sambodhi Research and Transform Rural India Foundation (TRIF). 
  • Commissioned by: Forum of Enterprises for Equitable Development (FEED), an organization dedicated to advocating for marginal farmers.

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