Topic- Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
1) Discuss the problems faced by women farmers in India. Also discuss how those problems could be solved.(250 words)
Why this question
With increasing feminization of agriculture it is important to discuss the problems of women farmers in India and also to discuss the solution to their problems.
Discuss- this is an all-encompassing directive which mandates us to write in detail about the key demand of the question. we also have to discuss about the related and important aspects of the question in order to bring out a complete picture of the issue in hand.
Key demand of the question.
The question wants us to write in detail about the problems faced by the women farmers in India and what solutions could help them tackle those problems and challenges more effectively.
Structure of the answer
Introduction– write a few introductory lines about the role of women in Indian agriculture. E.g mention the proportion of women farmers in India-According to Oxfam India, women are responsible for about 60-80% of food and 90% of dairy production, respectively. Mention that women farmers play a multidimensional role at every stage in agriculture — from sowing to planting, drainage, irrigation, fertilizer, plant protection, harvesting, weeding, and storage.
- Discuss the problems faced by them. E.g The Agriculture Census (2010-11) shows that out of an estimated 118.7 million cultivators, 30.3% were females. Similarly, out of an estimated 144.3 million agricultural labourers, 42.6% were females. In terms of ownership of operational holdings, the latest Agriculture Census (2015-16) is startling. Out of a total 146 million operational holdings, the percentage share of female operational holders is 13.87% (20.25 million); a lack of ownership of land does not allow women farmers to approach banks for institutional loans as banks usually consider land as collateral; women farmers have hardly any representation in society and are nowhere discernible in farmers’ organisations or in occasional protests; A declining size of land holdings may act as a deterrent due to lower net returns earned and technology adoption etc.
- Discuss how those problems could be solved. E.g Provision of credit without collateral under the microfinance initiative of the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development should be encouraged. Better access to credit, technology, and provision of entrepreneurship abilities will further boost women’s confidence and help them gain recognition as farmers; The possibility of collective farming can be encouraged to make women self-reliant. Training and skills imparted to women as has been done by some self-help groups and cooperative-based dairy activities (Saras in Rajasthan and Amul in Gujarat). These can be explored further through farmer producer organisations. Moreover, government flagship schemes such as the National Food Security Mission, Sub-mission on Seed and Planting Material and the Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana must include women-centric strategies and dedicated expenditure; making gender friendly farm tools and machinery etc.
Conclusion– based on your discussion, form a fair and a balanced conclusion on the given issue.