Loans amounting to Rs 15,626 crore have been sanctioned under Agriculture Infrastructure Fund to create 21,380 infrastructure units at an aggregate investment of more than Rs 32,000 crore all over the country till January this year.
The Central Government is providing grants-in-aid to states to promote Agriculture Infrastructure Fund and to improve agriculture.
Ministry of Agriculture in a reply in the Lok Sabha on Tuesday said, “In order to increase agriculture productivity and export, various measures were taken by the government, including Agriculture Infrastructure Fund (AIF) which encourages farmers, agri-entrepreneur, start-ups, Farmer Producers Organization, SHGs etc to adopt innovation and farm mechanisation in Indian agriculture.”
Apart from bridging the infrastructure gap in Indian agriculture in a bid to curtail post harvest losses, boosting productivity through facilitating loans from lending institutions for activities like, organic inputs production, bio stimulant production units, nursery, tissue culture, seed processing etc, said the reply.
Other activities in the category of infrastructure for smart and precision agriculture aim at making this sector attractive for the new generation are: Farm/harvest automation, setting up of custom hiring centres, purchase of drones, putting up specialized sensors on field, block chain and AI in agriculture etc. Introduction of remote sensing and Internet of Things (IOT) such as automatic weather station, farm advisory services through GIS applications constitute other such initiatives. AIF also aims at improvising supply chain services that include creation of e-marketing platforms, said the reply.