The inter-mandi trade on e-NAM (National Agriculture Market) witnessed more than two times growth during the first nine months of 2023-24.

Replying to a query in the Rajya Sabha on Friday, Arjun Munda, Union Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Minister, said inter-mandi trade increased from ₹436.3 crore during 2022-23 (April-December) to ₹1,137.1 crore in 2023-24 (April-December).

Inter-state trade on e-NAM increased from ₹1 crore during 2022-23 (April-December) to ₹40 crore in 2023-24 (April- December). As on December 31, a total trade value of ₹3 lakh crore was recorded on e-NAM platform.

e-NAM is a pan-India electronic trading portal which seeks to network the existing physical APMCs (agricultural produce market committees) through a virtual platform to create a unified national market for agricultural commodities. This platform provides a single window service for all APMC-related information and services. This includes commodity arrivals, quality and prices, buy and sell offers, provision to respond to trade offers and electronic payment settlement directly into farmers’ account, among other services.

As many as 1,361 mandis were integrated with e-NAM platform as on March 31, 2023, and 1.8 crore farmers were registered with it.

AI to tackle agri problems

To a separate query on the use of AI (artificial intelligence) to tackle problems in agriculture, the Minister said the Ministry has employed AI methods to address various challenges in the agricultural sector to aid farmers.

Giving the example of ‘Kisan e-Mitra’, an AI-powered chatbot to assist farmers with queries about the PM Kisan Samman Nidhi (Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi) scheme, he said this solution supports multiple languages and is evolving to assist with other government programmes.

Referring to the use of National Pest Surveillance System for tackling the loss of produce due to climate change, he said this system uses AI and Machine Learning to detect crop issues, enabling timely intervention for healthier crops.

Wheat, rice production

To another question on the production of foodgrains, Munda said the country witnessed a record foodgrain production of 3,296.87 lakh tonnes (lt) during the agricultural year 2022-23, registering an increase of 30.82 per cent compared to 2,520.25 lt in 2014-15.

He said the production of rice, wheat and pulses stood at 1,357.55 lt, 1,105.54 lt and 260.58 lt, respectively, during 2022-23, registering an increase of 28.7 per cent, 27.77 per cent, and 51.90 per cent over their respective production of 1,054.82 lt, 865.27 lt and 171.54 lt in 2014-15.

“The growing foodgrains production in the country is due to higher budget allocation to agriculture sector and successful implementation of various scheme and programmes by the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare,” he said.


To a separate question on the recovery of funds under PM-KISAN, the Minister said a few states reported instances of fraudulent transactions under the scheme. Following this, recoveries have been made from fraudulent beneficiaries by the state governments concerned. A total ₹335 crore has been recovered from such beneficiaries, he said.

As per operational guidelines of the scheme, it is the responsibility of the states/union territories to identify and verify the eligible beneficiaries under the scheme. Benefits are transferred to the beneficiaries through direct benefit transfer mode on the basis of verified data received from the states/union territories on the PM-KISAN portal. To help the states/union territories for automated validation of the beneficiaries’ data, PM-KISAN portal has been integrated with the portals of Unique Identification Authority of India for aadhaar authentication; with Public Finance Management System for validation of account and Government employees / pensioners data; with Income Tax department for validation of income tax payee status; and with National Payment Corporation of India for account validation and Aadhaar-based payments.

Eligible farmers are enrolled and deceased / ineligible beneficiaries are removed by way of continuous verification and validation of the beneficiary’s data. The states/union territories have been provided with the option to mark beneficiaries as eligible to ineligible and vice versa after due verification. eKYCof all the beneficiaries is also done to verify their status. States/union territories have been asked to expedite the process for saturation of the scheme with all the eligible beneficiaries and removal of ineligible beneficiaries, he said.