Panel for action against farmers using herbicides on GM mustard


The Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee’s (GEAC) sub-committee has drafted several recommendations on GM mustard before it approved the crop for commercial release. These included a proposal for legal action on farmers using the glufosinate-based herbicide (Basta) on the crop unless otherwise approved by the Central Insecticides Board and Registration Committee. Anti-GM activists question how effective such regulation.

Effect of glufosinate-based herbicide (Basta) on Human

Glufosinate-based herbicides act as a neurotoxin and have adverse impacts on humans, according to the U.S. National Institute of Health.

Source : The Hindu

GS III : Agriculture; Biotechnology



First maize-based food park in Punjab

In News

Union Minister of Food Processing Industry laid the foundation stone for First Maize based Mega Food Park in Kapurthala, Punjab.

About Food Park

  • The food park to be set up on 55 acres, at the cost of ₹123 crore, will grind 500 metric tonnes maize per day using latest processing facilities.
  • The unit will give a push to maize cultivation in Doaba region and lead to increased income for farmers.
  • The Union government is providing a financial assistance of ₹50 crore for the project.
  • The park will have facilities like multiple cold storage, deep freezer, warehouse, silos (to store grain), steam generation, for sorting and grading yard and food testing laboratory.
  • The park will have three primary procurement centres at SBS Nagar, Hoshiarpur and Jalandhar with primary processing and storage facilities.


  • Maize is a cereal and is an alternate to Jhona(paddy) and Kanak (wheat).
  • Maize is rich in protein, provides nutritional requirements that India needs and Maize consumes much lesser water and could contain the problem of further water depletion.
  • The productivity in India is 2.5 tonnes per hectare against the world average of 5.5 tonnes.

Mega Food Park

  • Aims at providing a mechanism to link agricultural production to the market by bringing together farmers, processors and retailers so as to ensure maximizing value addition, minimizing wastage, increasing farmers’ income and creating employment opportunities particularly in rural sector.
  • The Mega Food Park Scheme is based on Cluster approach and envisages a well-defined agree/ horticultural-processing zone containing state-of-the art processing facilities with support infrastructure and well-established supply chain.

Source : Pib

GS III : Major crops cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers.

SC gives government six months to show results of PM’s crop insurance scheme

In News

The Supreme Court gave the central government six months time to demonstrate the gains of Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana on the ground level as it observed that a serious issue like this could not be dealt with overnight.

PIL on Scheme

The petitioner NGO Citizens Resource and Action and Initiative seeking compensation to the families of the debt-ridden farmers who had committed suicide because of serious financial difficulties. The bench was hearing the PIL raising the issue of farmer suicides in Gujarat, which was later expanded pan-India by the Supreme Court.

Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana

To provide insurance coverage and financial support to the farmers in the event of failure of any of the notified crop as a result of natural calamities, pests & diseases.

  • Uniform premium of only 2% to be paid by farmers for all Kharif crops and 1.5% for all Rabi crops  and for annual commercial and horticultural crops, the premium to be paid by farmers will be only 5%.
  • There is no upper limit on Government subsidy. Even if balance premium is 90%, it will be borne by the Government.
  • Use of technology will be encouraged  by Smart phones will be used to capture and upload data of crop cutting to reduce the delays in claim payment to farmers, remote sensing will be used to reduce the number of crop cutting experiments.
  • All farmers growing notified crops in a notified area during the season who have insurable interest in the crop are eligible.



India & Cyprus sign Work Plan for 2017–18 in the Agriculture Sector

India and Cyprus here today signed Work Plan for 2017–18 to implement an already singed MOU for cooperation in the agriculture sector.

Key Facts

  • As per the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), the two countries have decided to work in joint research projects, conduct training/exchange programmes for scientists and experts working in specific agri-fields.
  • It also covers exchange of germplasms and technology, promotion of private sector participation and joint workshops and conferences etc.
  • The MoU will accelerate agricultural production to meet the rising demand for food, but also to increase the income of those dependent on agriculture.
  • The initiatives taken as a part of government’s policy to target doubling farmers income by 2022.

Extra information about Cyprus


Republic of Cyprus is an island country in the Eastern Mediterranean and the third largest and third most populous island in the Mediterranean. It is located south of Turkey, west of Syria and Lebanon, northwest of Israel and Palestine, north of Egypt, and southeast of Greece.

Source : Pib

GS II : Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.



PM launches projects related to SAUNI Yojana

The Prime Minister Narendra Modi dedicated to the nation, Phase-1 (Link 2) of the SAUNI (Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation) Yojana, at Botad. Also laid the Foundation Stone of Phase 2 (Link 2) of the SAUNI Yojana. The project envisages to channel the floodwater, which otherwise overflows the Narmada dam during monsoon and drains into the sea.

SAUNI (Saurashtra Narmada Avtaran Irrigation) Yojana

  • Project launched to divert one MAFt excess over flowing flood water of Narmada allocated to Saurashtra Region.
  • The excess over flowing flood water of Narmada will be distributed to 115 reservoirs of eleven districts of Saurashtra through total 1126 km long four link pipelines benefitting 10,22,589 acre land. These links are
  • Link: 1 From Machhu-II dam of Morbi district to Sani Dam of Jamanagar District
  • Link: 2 Limbdi Bhogavo-II Dam of Surendranagar District to Raidi Dam of Amreli District
  • Link: 3 From Dholidhaja Dam of Surendranagar District to Venu-I Dam of Rajkot District
  • Link: 4 From Limbdi Bhogavo-II Dam of Surendranagar District to Hiran-II Irrigation scheme of Junagadh
  • Under Sauni yojana, work of about 230 Km length of pipeline works are commenced since March 2014 and are under progress.

Source : Pib

GS III : different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage