Tuesday, June 28th, 2022 19:43:26

Strengthening India’s dairy sector

By Narendra Modi
Updated: January 3, 2022 11:30 am

For some people, talking about cow and cow dung here is like committing a crime. It can be a crime for some people, but for us, cows are our mother and are worshiped. People who make fun of cows and buffaloes forget that the livelihood of 8 crore families of the country depends upon livestock. Due to the hard work of these families, today India produces milk worth approximately Rs. 8.5 lakh crore every year. And the money involved in milk production is much more than that of wheat and rice produced in India. Therefore, strengthening the dairy sector of India is one of the top priorities of our government today. In line with this, the foundation stone of Banas Kashi Sankul has been laid in Kashi. FCrores of rupees have been transferred to the accounts of lakhs of farmers associated with Banas Dairy. The foundation stone of a biogas based power plant has also been laid for the Ramnagar milk plant. There has been another significant development which will have a positive impact on the dairy sector of the entire country. Today, a unified system is launched and its logo have also been released across the country to certify the purity of milk. Apart from these efforts related to the dairy sector, today lakhs of people of UP have also been handed over the legal documents of their homes i.e. Gharauni. Projects worth more than 1500 crore rupees have either been inaugurated or their foundation stones laid to make Varanasi more beautiful, accessible with more facilities. Congratulations to all of you for all these development projects! A special congratulations to the cattle rearers of UP and the entire country!

There was a time when the herds of cattle in our villages were the hallmark of prosperity. And here, everyone called it ‘Pashudhan’ or ‘cattle wealth’. There was a competition regarding the number of livestock in houses. Our scriptures had these lines-

गावो मे सर्वतः

चैव गवाम् मध्ये वसाम्यहम्।।

That is, the cows should be around me and I should live among the cows. This sector has always been a major source of employment here. But the support that this sector should have received a long time back was not provided by the previous governments. Now our government is changing this situation across the country. We have constituted Kamdhenu Aayog; a special fund of thousands of crores has also been created for the infrastructure of the dairy sector. We have also empowered lakhs of cattle farmers with the facility of Kisan Credit Card by running a huge campaign. Relentless work is going on so that the farmers get good quality fodder and seeds. A nationwide campaign has also been launched for the treatment of animals at home, for artificial insemination at home. We have also launched a nationwide vaccination mission for the control of Foot and Mouth Disease in animals. Our government is not only vaccinating children free of cost, not only providing corona vaccine free of cost, but also providing many free vaccines to save livestock.

As a result of these efforts in the country, the milk production has increased by about 45 per cent as compared to 6-7 years ago. That is, it has increased about one and a half times. Today India produces about 22 per cent of the world’s milk, which is almost 1/4th of the total production. I am glad that today UP is not only the largest milk producing state in the country, but also moving ahead in the expansion of dairy sector.

I firmly believe that the new energy in the dairy sector, animal husbandry, white revolution of the country can play a massive role in changing the condition of the farmers for the better. There are several reasons for this belief. Firstly, animal husbandry can become a huge source of additional income for the small farmers of the country, who are more than 10 crore in number. Secondly, India’s dairy products have a huge overseas market in which we have a lot of possibilities to move forward. Thirdly, animal husbandry is a great way of economic empowerment of women, to increase their participation in entrepreneurship. And fourthly, our livestock forms the basis of biogas and organic farming. Animals that are not capable of producing milk any longer are not a burden, but they too can increase the income of farmers every day.

Our government of double engine is supporting the farmers and cattle rearers with complete sincerity and full force . Today, the laying of the foundation stone of Banas Kashi Sankul too is a proof of this partnership of the government and the cooperative. A new partnership has started today between Banas Dairy and the farmers as well as cattle rearers of Purvanchal, who play an important role in the cooperative sector. When this modern dairy plant will be ready, not only Pindra, thousands and lakhs of farmers of Shivpur, Sewapuri, Rohaniya, and districts like Ghazipur, Jaunpur, Chandauli, Mirzapur, Ballia, Azamgarh and Mau too will benefit from it. Due to Banas Kashi Sankul, milk committees will be formed in many nearby villages; collection centers will be set up and we won’t have to worry about the spoilage of milk. Besides, farmers will receive assistance for good breed animals; and good quality food will also be made available for the animals. Apart from milk, curd, buttermilk, butter, paneer, ice cream and sweets will also be made here. That is, the lassi of Banaras, all the sweets made of chenna, and the taste of laung-lata will be enhanced even further. Well, now the season of Malaiyyo has also arrived. In a way, Banas Kashi Sankul will add to the sweetness of Banaras.

In general, we have also been very confused about the authenticity of the quality of milk. If you buy milk, it is difficult for an ordinary person to identify whether the milk is safe to consume or not. Due to different certifications, the entire dairy sector including cattle ranchers and milk unions had to face a lot of challenges. Now this challenge has been resolved for the dairy sector across the country. Today the Bureau of Indian Standards has released a unified system for the country. A logo featuring Kamdhenu cow has also been launched for certification. If this proof, this logo is visible, then the identification of purity will be easy and the credibility of India’s milk products will also be enhanced.

It’s high time that the country made the right use of the waste generated from the animals associated with the dairy sector. One such major effort is the construction of a biogas power plant near the milk plant of Ramnagar. This is a first of its kind project in which all the energy requirements of the dairy plant will be met from the biogas plant itself. That is, farmers will be able to earn not only from milk but also from the sale of cow dung. This biogas plant will buy cow dung from farmers at a price higher than what farmers usually get. The bio slurry produced here will be used for the production of bio slurry based organic fertilizers. The solid organic manure that will be made will be available to the farmers at a much lower cost than chemical fertilizers. This will also lead to the development of organic farming – natural farming and will also encourage the service of destitute animals.

There was a time when organic farming and natural processes were used in India. Under Organic farming, there is no adulteration and no chemicals are used in farming. All farm residues, products and the products from animals involved in farming, were used for this type of agriculture. Be it fertilizers or pesticides, everything was made naturally and used. But with the passage of time, the scope of natural farming shrunk, it was dominated by chemical farming. For the rejuvenation of mother earth, to protect our soil, to secure the future of the coming generations, now we have to once again turn to organic farming. This is the need of the hour today. And so, the government is also running a huge campaign to make farmers aware and to promote natural farming. And today when we are celebrating 75 years of Independence ‘Amrit Mahotsav’, I would urge the countrymen, my farmer brothers and sisters, especially my small farmers, on Farmers’ Day, that you should move forward towards natural farming and organic farming. The cost is less and the produce is higher. It is the cheapest method of farming, the safest method, and today around the world, the value of crops produced by organic farming is also very high. This is also a big step towards making our agriculture sector self-reliant. I will also tell the startup sector of the country, to the youth that there are many new possibilities for you in the field of organic farming. Our youth should take full advantage of this opportunity. Just before coming on stage here, I got a chance to meet several youngsters here. I was extremely delighted to hear about the many courageous things they have accomplished by being a part of the government schemes, how big a change has come into their lives! My faith in the schemes has become even stronger.

Swamitva Yojana also has a major role to play in making villages & farmers self-reliant, freeing them from illegal occupation. I am happy that under the leadership of Yogi ji, UP is also leading in this aspect. More than 23 lakh gharauni have been prepared in all 75 districts of UP. Of these, about 21 lakh families have been given these documents today. When they will have these legal documents of the house in their hands, then the poor, downtrodden and the backward sections of the society will be free from the worry of illegal occupation of their houses. The trend of illegal occupation that flourished here during the regime of the previous governments will also be curbed. By getting a home, it will also be easier now to get loans from banks if needed. This will provide new means for employment, self-employment to the youth of the villages.

When it comes to development, Kashi is becoming a model in itself. How our cities can adopt a new body while maintaining the ancient identity is visible in Kashi. The projects which have been inaugurated and the foundation stone laid today will give further impetus to the ‘Bhavya Kashi, Divya Kashi’ campaign. The redevelopment work in 6 wards of the city, including Kal Bhairav ji and installation of CCTV cameras at more than 700 places, have given further impetus to Kashi’s move towards smart and secure facilities. The work of developing the birthplace of great saint Pujya Shri Ravidas ji is also going on at a rapid pace. With the construction of the Langar Hall, devotees coming from all over the country will get a lot of comfort and convenience.

Today the intersections of Varanasi are getting beautiful, the roads are getting widened, new parking spaces are being constructed, due to which the traffic jam situation in the city has improved a lot. You are very well aware of the pressure on the highway stretch from Varanasi Cantt to Prayagraj via Lahartara. Now with the 6 lanes, all the passengers travelling and commercial vehicles from Delhi, Agra, Kanpur, Prayagraj will benefit a lot! Moreover, commuting to other areas of the city will also become easier. This road will be developed as the entrance gate of the district. Due to the widening of Varanasi-Bhadohi-Gopiganj road, vehicles originating from the city will be able to go from outside via Ring Road Phase-2. This will get rid of heavy traffic jams.

Continuous efforts are underway to strengthen Kashi’s identity as a health, education and research hub. Today an AYUSH hospital has been inaugurated and the work of establishing a new Homeopathic Medical College has started. With such facilities, Kashi is also going to emerge as an important center of the Indian system of medicine. With the formation of Regional Reference Standard Laboratory, water testing, tests related to clothes and carpets will be done here. This will directly benefit the weavers and the many industries in and around Varanasi. At the same time, with the new speed breeding facility set up at the International Rice Research Center, it will take far less time to develop a new variety of paddy than before.

When I talk of double power and double development with double engine in the development of Kashi and Uttar Pradesh, some people get very upset. These are the people who have witnessed the politics of Uttar Pradesh only through the prism of caste, creed and religion. These people never wanted UP to develop or imagined UP with a modern identity. Schools, colleges, hospitals, roads, water, electricity, houses of the poor, gas connections, toilets : they do not consider these as development. This language of ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas, Sabka Vishwas and Sabka Prayas’ is not there in their dictionary or syllabus. You all know what is there in their syllabus, dictionary, language, and thoughts. They have in their syllabus – mafiaism, nepotism. They have – illegal occupation of houses and lands. The difference between what the people of UP got during the earlier governments and what the people of UP are getting from our government today is clear. We are not only encouraging and enhancing the heritage in UP, but also developing UP. But these people who think only about their selfish desires are not liking the development of UP. The situation is such that these people have started objecting to the development of Purvanchal, Baba’s work and Vishwanath Dham’s work. I have been told that last Sunday, more than 1.5 lakh devotees had reached Kashi Vishwanath Dham for darshan. The displeasure of these people who had pushed UP decades back will only increase. The people of UP are standing firmly with the double engine government and blessing us; and as the blessings increase, the anger of those people too will start rising. The government of double engine will continue to work hard day in and day out for the development of UP.


By Narendra Modi

(This article is based on edited version of PM Narendra Modi’s speech in Varanasi)

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