Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic : Reviving India’s Agricultural Economy

 GS-3 Mains Exam : Economy

Revision Notes


  • Recent appointment of Shivraj Singh Chouhan to head the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare (MoA&FW) is a positive step for India’s struggling rural economy.

Boosting Agricultural Productivity and Income

1.Invest in R&D and Climate-Smart Agriculture

  • Agriculture is a complex food system encompassing production, marketing, and consumption.
  • Rising climate change threats necessitate investment in climate-resilient practices.
  • The government should significantly increase spending on agricultural R&D and extension services (to at least 1% of agri-GDP) to develop heat-resistant crop varieties and water-efficient farming methods.

2.Eliminate Consumer Bias in Pricing and Exports

  • Farmers need access to cutting-edge technologies and fair market opportunities.
  • The government should abandon policies that favor consumers over farmers, such as:
    • Frequent export bans on agricultural products
    • Stocking limits imposed on traders
    • Unloading government stocks at low prices
    • Suspending futures markets
  • A calibrated approach can be taken, starting with removing the onion export ban.

3.Replicating AMUL’s Success for Other Products

  • The government should collaborate with other ministries to develop value chains for high-value crops, fruits, vegetables, and livestock products.
  • Strategies include:
    • Partnering with organized private sectors, cooperatives, or farmer producer companies
    • Offering incentives similar to the PLI scheme or the AMUL model for milk production
    • Increasing farmers’ share of consumer spending
  • The TOP scheme (tomatoes, onions, and potatoes) can be a starting point for fixing value chains to benefit both producers and consumers.

4.Optimize Fertilizer Subsidies

  • Transfer the fertilizer subsidy budget (currently Rs 1.88 trillion) to the MoA&FW.
  • The current subsidy system heavily distorts the NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium) balance in favor of nitrogen.
  • This has led to:
    • Reduced grain-to-fertilizer ratio (from 10:1 in the 1970s to 2:1 today)
    • Inefficient fertilizer use (plants absorb only 35-40% of supplied nitrogen)
    • Environmental damage from nitrous oxide emissions
  • Reform the subsidy system by:
    • Providing direct cash transfers to farmers
    • Deregulating fertilizer prices
    • Issuing digital fertilizer coupons for purchasing chemical or bio-fertilizers/natural farming practices
    • Careful planning for a smooth transition


  • A multi-pronged approach is crucial for revitalizing India’s agricultural sector.
  • Implementing these comprehensive measures can boost farmer incomes and propel India’s agricultural sector towards a brighter future.
  • Reviving the rural economy is essential for India’s ambition of becoming a developed nation by 2047.



Indian Express Editorial Summary

Editorial Topic : India-Bangladesh Ties

 GS-2 Mains Exam : IR

Revision Notes

Strong Leadership Fosters Closer Relations

  • Prime Ministers Sheikh Hasina (Bangladesh) and Narendra Modi (India) have driven a period of intense engagement, meeting 10 times in the past year.
  • Their commitment has ushered in a “golden chapter” in bilateral relations.
  • The recent visit by PM Hasina to India signifies the importance placed on this partnership.

Building on Progress: A Vision for the Future

  • The two leaders unveiled a “vision for a shared future” to further strengthen ties.
  • Key areas of focus include:
    • Completing the “unfinished agenda of connectivity” (easier visas, freer movement of goods, cross-border energy flow, digital infrastructure).
    • Establishing a Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) to boost trade.
    • Deepening regional economic integration, especially in the Bay of Bengal region.
    • Modernizing the bilateral defense partnership through collaboration and support for Bangladesh’s armed forces.
    • Promoting regional and international collaboration on issues like disaster management and global South interests.

Challenges to Address

  • Unresolved border disputes and water sharing issues from common rivers can cause tensions.
  • Illegal migration from Bangladesh to India strains resources and is further complicated by the Rohingya refugee crisis.
  • Non-tariff barriers and complex trade regulations hinder smoother economic ties.
  • Security concerns like cross-border smuggling and human trafficking require joint efforts.
  • China’s growing economic influence in Bangladesh presents a potential strategic challenge for India.

A Promising Future

  • Despite remaining challenges, the leadership of Hasina and Modi has significantly improved India-Bangladesh relations.
  • A shared vision for the future offers a path to unlock the full potential of this strategic partnership.

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