India is an agricultural country. Agriculture is the backbone of Indian economy. The most striking characteristic of the economic life in India is the overwhelming preponderance of agriculture represented by the fact that three out of every four person in the country is devoted to agriculture. Agriculture provides practically all the food grains consumed in the country, and yields larger quantities of raw materials like cotton, jute, oil-seeds, etc. for the principal manufacturing industries.
The need for agricultural improvement is imperative from many points of view. It will lead to an improvement in the economic condition of the masses and raise their standard of living. It will ensure adequate food supply for the population of the country. The effects of improved agriculture on industry are no less important. The increased purchasing power of the rural masses will provide a large home market for absorbing the products of the home manufac turer. Improvement in agriculture will necessarily imply a growing mechani zation of its process and may be expected to bring into existence large manufacturing establishments to produce agricultural tools and machinery.
Although agriculture is practically the only national industry in India, it is conducted under the unsatisfactory conditions and the average yield per acre of the different crops is consequently much lower than in countries where agriculture is better organized. One of the obvious causes of low productivity in India is the uncertain character of the rainfall. Apart from shortage and abnormal distribution of rainfall there are other causes such as floods, hail storms, frosts and other vagaries of climate, which have an injurious effect on crops. Irrigation supplies a partial corrective to deficiency of rainfall. Much damage is also caused by wild animals, rats, locusts and other pests. Various agricultural departments have addressed themselves with some success to the tasks of devising and popularizing...
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