The central government is going to bring a scheme to rid the country’s farmers and farms from toxic chemical fertilizers. This scheme does not have PM Pranam (PM PRANAM). To implement the scheme, the central government will give incentives to the states so that they increase their dependence on alternative fertilizers to avoid the use of chemical fertilizers. The full name of this proposed scheme is PM Promotion of Alternative Vitamins for Agriculture Administration Scheme. The main objective of this scheme is to reduce the subsidy burden on chemical fertilizers by any means.
The subsidy on chemical fertilizers is increasing year after year in the country, whose burden is falling on the government exchequer. The yield is there, but more than that, health and environmental damage is being done. The truth is that if the alternative of chemical fertilizers is explored, along with the subsidy, health and environment will also be saved. According to an estimate, the subsidy for chemical fertilizers is estimated to go to Rs 2.25 lakh crore in 2022-23. Earlier its estimated amount was fixed at Rs 1.62 lakh crore, but an increase of 39 percent is being seen in it.
What is the preparation of the government
It has been said in media reports that the Ministry of Chemical Compounds and Fertilizers has proposed the PM Pranam scheme and issues related to it have also been discussed with some states. The report says that suggestions have also been sought from the states regarding this scheme. If this scheme starts, then there will not be a separate fund allocation from the government for this, but provision will also be made in the existing fertilizer subsidy.
States will get their share of subsidy
This report, citing sources, says that 50 percent of the fertilizer subsidy will be given to the states as grants so that they can use that money to source alternative fertilizers. 70 percent of this grant will be used to develop alternative fertilizer technology, fertilizer manufacturing model at village, block and district level. The remaining 30 percent will be used to create awareness and promote farmers, panchayats, farmer producer organizations and self-help groups.
Rising subsidies cause for concern
In the current financial year (2022-23), the government has allocated Rs 1.05 lakh crore for subsidy. The Fertilizer Minister has said that this year the figure of fertilizer subsidy may cross Rs 2.25 lakh crore. On August 5, Union Minister of State for Chemical Compounds and Fertilizers Bhagwant Khuba in a written reply to the Lok Sabha said, 4 fertilizers are needed – Urea, DAP (Di-Ammonium Phosphate), MOP (Muriat of Potash), NPKS (Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium) – increased by 21 percent to 640.27 Lakh Metric Tonnes (LMT) in 2021-22 from 528.86 Lakh Metric Tonnes (LMT) in 2017-18.
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