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Imbalances in India’s cereal economy need more than a short-term fix -Jean Dreze

-The Indian Express The need of the hour is to expand distribution under the PDS. Failing that, the country is heading towards another round of wasteful stock accumulation even as poor people struggle to feed their families. The paradox of “hunger amidst plenty” has haunted India for a long time and shows no sign of going away. On the contrary, it reached a new plane in 2020. On the one hand, the...

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Crop risks, environmental damages, hunger and the 2020 farm laws -KAS Mani

-Down to Earth Improved access to new markets, better yields and higher income need to safeguard environmental sustainability and farmers’ indebtedness The ongoing agitation by farmers on the borders of Delhi provides an opportunity to flag concerns about various aspects in the agriculture sector, including the environment, society, economy, Food Security and risk coverage for farmers. Several commentators have already spoken about the 2020 farm laws, supported by statistics, and experience. Many of...

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Why we must listen to farmers -Sudeshna Maya Sen

-IDROnline.org Agriculture value-chains can only be strengthened by listening to multiple actors; most importantly, farmers. India has been witnessing a spate of month-long farmer protests across the country, particularly in the national capital, against the recently introduced farm bills by the central government. One of the major reasons behind these agitations, including calls for repealing the law, is that farmers were not actively involved in the policymaking cycle of these laws, which...

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For a smarter Food Security programme -Vijay Avinandan, Alok Mishra and Subham Awasthi

-The Indian Express Evidence-driven approaches, including those tried out in Mexico and Brazil, can remove shortcomings in India’s nutrition schemes. The findings of the National Family Health Survey (NFHS-5) have come as a reality check, and even experts are trying to make sense of it. The survey shows that Food Security and nutrition in India have worsened since the last NFHS round (2015-16). Among the 22 states and Union Territories (UTs) for...

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WTO review backs Centre move to cut farm subsidies

-The Tribune Review skeptical about programmes such as ‘Make-in-India’ and ‘Self-Reliant India’ New Delhi: The World Trade Organisation’s review of India’s trade policies has expressed concern about the high level of government intervention in the agriculture sector. Members recognised the importance of the sector in supporting livelihoods and Food Security. At the same time, they urged India to reform its agricultural policies as they continue to be based on “significant levels” of domestic and...

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