Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu has called for a revamp of laws governing cooperative sector in the context of changed techno-economic so that it becomes viable and vibrant enterprise. He was delivering the Laxmanrao Inamdar Memorial Lecture on Cooperatives, organised by Sahakar Bharati, in Mumbai.
The Vice President said that lack of awareness, vagaries of monsoon, lack of access to market and storage facilities is making agriculture un-viable, thereby forcing people to migrate from rural areas to urban areas.
Thus, the Vice President called up on the cooperative sector to play key role in strengthening rural economy and also help the farmers raise their income. To achieve this, he asked Research institutions and government agencies to support cooperatives in their efforts to educate farmers and encourage them diversify into allied vocations like horticulture, fishery, bee-keeping, rural logistics and transportation, food processing etc to generate additional income.
The Vice President also asked for an increased focus and attention of authorities, politicians, media, and scientists to make united efforts to improve the lives of people dependent of farming and Agriculture.
Vice President Naidu said that cooperatives can help in reducing the cost of production by sensitising farmers.
The Vice President said that even though India became self-sufficient in food grain production, agriculture sector suffers from structural constraints. He called up on cooperative societies to become important conduit between the government and the farmers to deliver the benefits of government schemes, such Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojna, Krishi Sinchayi Yojna, Jan Dhan, e-NAM, MUDRA Yojna, Minimum Support Price and others to farmers.
The Vice President sought for coordinated efforts of cooperatives, agriculture research institutions, Kisan Vikas Kendras and farmers’ groups in line with the government’s resolve to double farmers’ income by 2022.
The Vice President said that Indian cooperative movement has a great history and has made tremendous progress in several sectors but he also added that the cooperative sector was facing structural challenges.
Shri Naidu said that Cooperative sector has proven to be a successful model world over and countries like Singapore, Denmark, Scandinavian countries, Japan and Switzerland have seen success. He has also stressed the need to learn from best practices and see if we can adopt some best practices in fields such as healthcare, retail, food production and others.