The Budget has rightly recognised that bringing more and more acreages under assured irrigation will reduce the dependence of famers on the vagaries of weather.

The Finance Minister has laid out a plan in the budget to enlarge the irrigation infrastructure of the Indian agriculture under Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana. Besides, the Budget also mentions time-bound projects and review mechanisms to achieve this important goal.

Measures to improve ground water management, reviving farm ponds and wells under MNREGA, would immensely help the farming community. The positive push of this government to cover all the 14 Cr farmers with Soil health card is a commendable effort for crop nutrient management on a scientific basis. The unified national e platform along with improving rural road connectivity with a large outlay of ₹19,000 crore will improve farmers’ access to consuming markets.

But the Budget has missed out to encourage research and innovation in modern and new farm technologies, given the challenges of climate change and the need for producing more with fewer resources in the coming years.

The writer is Managing Director, MAHYCO.