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Union Finance Minister of the nation, Nirmala Sitharaman, today, unveiled the 3rd tranche of the Rs. 20 Lakh Economic-Financial Package announced by Prime Minister earlier to help various sections of society tide over the coronavirus crisis. Finance Minister unveiled the rest of the relief measures of the plan. The main focus was on the reforms to strengthen agriculture and allied sectors’ supply chain of the nation like fisheries, farmers, food processing, and animal husbandry.

Finance Minister listed out 11 measures of ‘Self-Sustainability’ today which are as follows

FM announced to provide of 1 Lakh crores liquidity for funding aggregators, Farmers Producer Organisations, startups, etc for strengthening the farm gate infrastructure of the nation.

Fund of Rs 10,000 crores will be provided to the Food Enterprises which are micro in size. It is a bid to promote the vision of HON. PM “Vocal For Local” with global outreach which would benefit 2 lakhs of Micro Food Enterprises (MFE’s). It will be a cluster-based approach to improve health standards, branding, and marketing MFE’s.

Liquidity of Rs. 20,000 crores for Pradhan Mantri Matsya Sampada Yojna (PMMSY) scheme will be provided by the government which will be bid to help India in generating employment and increase exports. Rs. 11,000 crores will be provided to the marine, inland fisheries, and aquaculture which will lead to additional fish production of 70 lakh tonnes over 5 years. Also, Rs. 9,000 crores will be available for the infrastructure of fishing harbors, cold chains, markets, etc.

100 percent vaccination for 53 crore animals ( like cattle, buffalo, sheep) will be provided under the Animal Disease Control Programme with a total outlay of Rs. 13,000 crores to ensure that Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) is eradicated among living animals.

An amount of Rs. 15,000 crores will be set up in the Animal Husbandry Infrastructure Development Fund to support private investment in dairy processing and cattle field infrastructure. Incentives will be given for establishing plants for export niche products.

Boost Promotion of Herbal Cultivation with an outlay of Rs. 4,000 crores will be covered for the next 2 years which will lead to Rs. 5,000 crores income generation for farmers. Local mandis will be set up for medical plants soon. National Medicinal Plants Board (NMPB) will bring an 800-hectare area by developing a corridor of medicinal plants along the Banks of Ganga.

Liquidity of Rs. 500 crores will be provided for Bee Keeping initiatives to benefit more than 2 lakh Bee Keepers of the nation under the scheme of Bee Keeping Infra Development.

500 crores of Operation Greens will be extended from Tomatoes, Onion, and Potatoes (TOP) to all fruits and vegetables (TOTAL). 50 percent subsidy on transportation from surplus to deficient markets and 50 percent subsidy on storage, including cold storages scheme will be provided soon. Pilot projects will be expanded and extended for 6 months.

Essential Commodities will be deregulated for products like cereals, oilseeds, onion, etc under the amendment for Essential Commodities Act (1955). The stock limit will be imposed under very exceptional circumstances like national calamities, famines, etc.

A new Central law will be formulated for farmers by Agriculture Produce Market Committee (APMC) where farmers will have a free choice to sell their products at an attractive price in barrier-free Inter-State Trades.

Risk Mitigation for farmers, legally assured returns and quality standardization will form the most important part of the framework for agriculture producers. Facilitative Legal Form will be created soon to enable farmers for engaging with aggregators, large retailers, exports, etc transparently.

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