The Union Budget 2013-14 which was tabled by the Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram on 28 February 2013 aimed at higher growth leading to inclusive and sustainable development. The allocation of the funds to the rural development, agriculture and food security is described as follows:
Allocation to Rural Development, Agriculture and Food Security
A total of 80194 crore Rupees was allocated for Rural Development Ministry, an increase by 46 percent in 2013-14 fiscal year.
Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana
Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY)-II was proposed for the benefit of those states which have substantially fulfilled the objectives of PMGSY. The beneficiary states will be Rajasthan, Punjab, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Haryana and Andhra Pradesh.
Allocation of funds to Ministry of Agriculture
The Ministry of Agriculture got an increase of 22 percent over revised estimates for 2012-2013. The budget allocation to the Ministry of Agriculture was 27049 crore Rupees. 500 crore Rupees was allocated for initiating the programme on crop diversification.
Pilot Programme on Nutri-Farms
Apart from this, the pilot programme on Nutri-Farms will be started for the purpose of introduction of new crop varieties which are rich in micro-nutrients like iron-rich bajra. A total of 200 crore Rupees would be facilitated for starting this pilot programme.
Support to Farmer Producer Organizations
The Budget will also support the Farmer Producer Organizations (FPO), which also includes Farmer Producer Companies (FPC) that have emerged as the aggregators of farm produce. This will link the farmers directly to the markets.
Agricultural credit for 2012-13, which was 575000 crore Rupees was increased. A target of 700000 crore farm credit was fixed for 2013-14 fiscal year.
Interest Subvention Scheme
The Interest Subvention Scheme for short-term crop loans would be continued for loans by the Cooperative Banks, RRBs, public sector banks and will also be expanded to private scheduled commercial banks. Under this scheme, any farmer who pays back the loan on time would get credit at 4 percent annually.
National Livestock Mission
Apart from this, 307 crore Rupees was set aside for National Livestock Mission in order to attract investment and enhance livestock productivity. A sub-mission of this National Livestock Mission was also started for increasing the availability of feed and fodder.
The Union Finance Minister announced the possibility of National Food Security Bill to be passed by the Parliament and 10000 crore Rupees was set aside for incremental cost which would occur under the Act.
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