Agriculture sector to grow at 3% in 2020-21 despite Covid-19 lockdown: Modi govt

Estimated growth in the sector has been attributed to normal monsoon this year along with water availability in reservoirs, which is 40-60% higher than last year.

A farmer carries dried grass between paddy fields in Odisha (representational image)

New Delhi: Amid the coronavirus lockdown across the country that brought economic activity to a near halt, the Modi government is expecting that agriculture sector could be a silver lining for the Indian economy as it is estimated to grow at a rate of 3 per cent for the year 2020-21, according to NITI Aayog.

NITI Aayog member Ramesh Chand said at a press conference Wednesday that currently the growth of the agriculture sector is 60 per cent more than the non-agriculture sectors, which is very rare.

NITI Aayog attributed the estimated growth in the agricultural sector to normal monsoon this year along with India’s water availability in reservoirs, which is 40-60 per cent higher than last year, said Chand.

Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar, who was also present at the press conference, said: “The growth rate in real terms for the agriculture sector in 2019-20 was 3.7 per cent which can be deduced at 11.3 per cent in current prices.” 

According to the Economic Survey 2019-20, the annual growth rate in real terms in agriculture and its allied sectors was 2.88 per cent from 2014-15 to 2018-19 whereas the estimated growth rate in 2019-20 was 2.9 per cent.

Economic activity across India has almost come to a standstill after the countrywide lockdown came into effect on 25 March to prevent the spread of the highly infectious Covid-19 disease.

Although the activity of manufacturing and services sectors has been put to a halt by the lockdown, the agriculture and allied sector activities have been allowed partially by the government. 

Source: The Print

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