ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846
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A Watershed

THE year 1983-84, claims the annual report of the Department of Agriculture and Co-operation for the year, "will stand out as a new watershed in the progress of Indian agriculture". At first sight the claim will seem not unjustified. For five years since 1978-79, which is officially regarded as the best monsoon year of the century, production of foodgrains had stagnated in the 128-133 million tonnes range, with a sharp dip to about 110 million tonnes in 1979-80. In 198 5-84, however, foodgrains production pierced this seeming barrier and is expected, according to the Department of Agriculture, to reach an all-time peak of 144 million tonnes. This would be 10.7 million tonnes or 8 per cent higher than the previous record output of 133.3 million tonnes in 1981-82 and as much as 15.6 million tonnes or 12 per cent higher than the production of 128.4 million tonnes in 1982-83. This achievement, the Agriculture Department's annual report has no hesitation in claiming, testifies to "the soundness of the production strategies followed by the government over the years and the growing strength and resilience of Indian agriculture".

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