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Meghalaya CM distributes financial aid to farmers at Tikrikilla, stresses on women empowerment

Shillong, February 13, 2022: In its continued effort to reach out to the farming community in Meghalaya, Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma on Saturday reached out to farmers at Tikrikilla, where at least 288 Producers Groups had gathered to receive the cheques amounting to ₹1.86 Cr.

Distributing the cheques at a public programme, which saw participation of Producers Groups, Self Help Groups and Cooperative Societies, the Chief Minister reiterated the Government’s ambitious farmers collectivisation programme – FOCUS, that aims to revolutionize farming activities linked to income generations.

“As a Government, we realised that our farming communities in the State were left out, which called for launching various welfare initiatives for the farmers. Through our programmes, we are providing support, financial assistance and market linkage, so as to upscale farming activities,” he said.

In a prioritized manner Government has rolled out the FOCUS programme in the State and by March this year ₹17.28 cr will be disbursed to about 1650 Producers Groups and by the end of financial year 2022-23 another  ₹130 cr will be disbursed to about 16,800 producers groups.

‘FOCUS’, which is dubbed as the largest farmers welfare programme in the history of Meghalaya, the State which has declared December 1 as “Farmers Day”, envisages to reach out to at least 4.5 lakh farmers with different welfare schemes.

He told the gathering that under FOCUS ₹200 cr has been earmarked for the current financial year, which is being disbursed to farmers across the State as financial support.

Apart from FOCUS, the State Government is supporting on a mission mode farmers through programmes like Dairy and Piggery Mission, wherein interest free loans are provided to Cooperative Societies as well as financial support to Self Help Groups from National Rural Livelihood Missions.

In the last three months, Community Investment Funds to the tune of  ₹120 cr has been disbursed. In today’s programme at Tikrikilla, the Chief Minister distributed interest free bank loans worth  ₹29 lakhs and Community Investment Funds of  ₹21 lakhs to women led SHGs.

“Our commitment to spur women empowerment and their entrepreneurial dreams is testament to the burgeoning SHGs Movement in the State,” he added.

During his day-long programme in Tikrikilla, the Chief Minister also interacted with  beneficiaries of PMAYG, MGNREGS, NSAP, farmers & SHGs at Tikrikilla.

“Understanding people’s issues at the grassroot and ensuring they are heard allows us to make better decisions to their advantage and MDA is committed to this end,” the Chief Minister added.

Initiatives : Agriculture

Launch of “Restart Meghalaya Mission’ on 15th August 2020

The Mission comprise of a series of interventions to support farmers and entrepreneurs by enabling them to build growth-promoting basic infrastructure and services. Under this Mission, 1917iTEAMS – the IT Platform aimed at enabling farmers access to agricultural information, crop advisories and markets will be expanded logistically through induction of another 100 vehicles.

Creation of the Directorate of Food Processing on May 2018

With the objective of seizing opportunities in the sector and the untapped food processing potential of the state for uplifting the livelihoods of farmers and value chain actors, the Government of Meghalaya created the Directorate of Food Processing (DFP) as a one-stop agency to handle all matters relating to food processing in the state and to deal with all central government Ministries and Agencies (viz. Ministries of Agriculture, and Food Processing, SFAC, NCDC, NABARD, etc.) in all matters pertaining to the development of agricultural food processing sector.

First Ever Farmer’s Parliament held on 4th - 5th December 2018

The parliament was organised by the state department of agriculture in collaboration with Meghalaya Basin Development Authority (MBDA) and the Hill Farmers' Union (HFU). As a step toward the promotion of new technologies, HFU with the support of Meghalaya government, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for a Machine Learning Artificial Intelligence App for farmers — called Nongrep (nongrep in Khasi language means farmer) with its software partner Impetus Solutions from Hyderabad — as a social innovation project. This app will address matters of farm aggregations, soil health and disease identification, crop yield, farm produce pickups, market linkage and retail sellers app.

Launch of the Farmer’s Portal on 7th May 2018

The Meghalaya Famers’ Portal (www.megfarmers.gov.in) of the Department of Agriculture is a platform for farmers to seek any information related to agriculture. Detailed information on farmers’ insurance, agricultural storage, crops, extension activities, seeds, pesticides, farm machineries, etc. is provided. Details of fertilizers, market prices, package and practices, programmes, welfare schemes are also given.

Awards & Recognitions
  • Meghalaya has been selected for the Commendation award in 'Total foodgrains Category-III' for 2017-18. The award consists of a citation and an amount of Rs. 1 crore.
  • Meghalaya Agriculture Department and the MIE Meghalaya Team won the '7th eNabling North East (eNorth East) Award 2019-20' in the 'Agriculture & Rural Development' category for 1917 iTEAMS project which is a project in collaboration with Digital India.
  • Prime Minister Narendra Modi awarded Meghalaya on May 2018 the Krishi Commendation Award for the year 2015-16, in recognition of the commendable foodgrains production achieved by the State.
  • Meghalaya has been adjudged the Most Improved Small State in the category of Agriculture and received the India Today – "The State of the States” Award on 23rd November 2018.