National Report of Agriculture Commission of farmers(Swaminathan Report)
The importance of agriculture in the socio-economic fabric of India can be realised from the fact that the livelihood of majority of the country’s population depends on agriculture. The agriculture sector contributes only about 18 per cent of the total Gross Domestic Product (GDP), with more than 60% population dependence, resulting in low per capita income in the farm sector. Consequently, there is a large disparity between the per capita income in the farm sector and the non-farm sector. Therefore, it is essential to deal with those issues which impact the income levels of farmers. The income levels are determined by the overall production, supported by reasonable levels of yield and prices realised by the farmers. Several constraints such as preponderance of small and marginal holdings accounting for about 82 per cent of total holdings, imperfect market conditions and lack of backward and forward linkages affect the income levels of farmers adversely. Accordingly, an appropriate policy needs to be evolved to ensure that farming activity becomes more viable and the economic condition of farmers is improved on a sustainable basis.