Farmer’s Day | “Annadata Diwas” for The “First Mile Link” in Food Chain

Sustainable Agriculture, MSME & Green Value Chain Finance | Priority Sector Finance | Manoj Rawat, ValueFin India

Farmer’s Day | “Annadata Diwas” for The “First Mile Link” in Food Chain

Farmer’s Day | Annadata Diwas
The First Mile Link in Food Chain
We should at least mark 2 days in year to celebrate as Farmer’s Days”Annadata Diwas”.
This should be once on the onset of Kharif season and the onset of Rabi Season. The focus of these two days should be to celebrate the importance of farming and farmers “Annadata” and understanding the field level socio economic status of our “Annadatas” (who feeds us by staying hungry) . While some would say 23 Dec was earmarked but what next, what happens and who knows?
“Annadata” Farmer is the “First Mile” in Food Chain. Stop Treating him as the “Last Mile”. If we start thinking so, the mindset and approach will change.
Timing is important
These two days should be before onset of sowing season to help and work with farmer to help plan the crop to enable him to get the best for his efforts and paveway for helping him get rightful price for harvest.
Genuine, Sincere and comprehensive efforts needed 
We need to make serious and sincere attempt to thoroughly deliberate on policies before onset on these seasons every year and come out with some implementable short term, medium term and long term solutions as to how can our “Annadatas” painful & pressing issues can be addressed and farming is made as profitable as any other profession, service or manufacturing.
No Vote bank and manipulation of distress
The issues of neglect of farming, distress of farmers, the respect for farming as profession and genuine ways to enhance socio economic status of farmers in society need to be discussed by all who are “eat” or are “Fed” by the farmers. It involves all citizens and consumers, the policy makers, scientists, doctors, engineers, bankers, financiers, service men, economists, marketing experts, analysts, industrialists, politicians and each one. This distress like situation has be addressed in comprehensive manner where every consumer & citizen is a stakeholder. Farmers community cannot be treated only a “vote bank” and the “distress” of farmers is manipulated for gains.
We need to understand in future we will have more than 90% farmers as small and marginal in next decade, when soil quality will get further deteriorate, water scarcity will be more severe and population will grow by another 20%, then how are we going to address the issues of farm, farmers , income security of farmers and food security of nation.
Farmer is as important as Doctor, Banker, Engineer or Insutrialist
A farmer is as important as Doctor, Engineer, Banker, Artist or less in any way. This is because we all survive, everyday, because of farmers our “Annadatas”, how rich or poor we may be ?
Following 5 points need to extensively deliberated.
1. Are we really understanding the key issues of farmers and trying to identify the ways to address the genuine issues in a sustainable manner, without making any stop gap arrangement ? Where have also policies gone wrong and what are the corrective measures?
2. How to make farming a profitable proposition by ensure rightful price to the farmer so that it is taken like any other profession? How to keep farmers in farming to ensure we can feed a most populous country of the world 160 + crore in coming two decades?
3. How farmers community can avoid being just treated only a “vote bank” and the “distress” of farmers is manipulated for gains? Rather than temporary and recurring appeasement, how farmers can seek rightful socio economic status in the society and right value for the sweat, efforts and his harvest?
4. The farmers level and farm gate interventions should treated as “First Mile” not the “Last Mile”. Farmers First Approach. The multiple policies of government should be aligned to ensure that interventions should be on ” First Mile” and Priority basis. The farm interventions, extensions, financing, literacy, agri value chains, agri markets all need to be realigned to address distress in farm sector.
5. Need to realise and ponder upon the fact “Food security” of the nation will ultimately depend on the “income security” of farmers. How will Food security be ensured for billions of mouths.
We should be sincerely be grateful to our “Annadata”
On these Farmer’s days, let’s all find time to express our sincere gratitude to our “Annadatas”, the selfless “Giver” to society as they help each one of us survive, by jeopardizing their own and their families survival. While we and our families sleep with a sumptuous dinner, they cut stomachs and go to sleep hungry, to feed you again next day. Let’s recognise and celebrate their hard work, sacrifices, innovations and successes.
Just to reiterate “Annadata” Farmer is the “First Mile” in Food Chain. Stop Treating him as the “Last Mile” and then devising solutions. Farmer is the “First Mile Link” in Food Chain and hence solutions should be appropriately designed.
It’s high time we express out gratefulness to our “Annadata” by getting out of distress in a sustainable manner, get him the rightful price for his efforts, give him the rightful place in society and obliviate him from this sorrowful situation?
Views expressed are purely personal
Inclusive Development | Manoj Rawat | Mumbai | India
Manoj Rawat | Mumbai |India

4 Responses

  1. Rahul Garg says:

    Very well said sir! In order to commemorate the hard work our farmers do, there needs to be something that glamorizes the agricultural sector. The least we can do is to recognize the person who sleeps hungry at night, just to ensure that we don't!

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