Published: Sat, January 13, 2018
World | By Paul Elliott

Raising farmer's income key to better agricultural production: Rajiv Kumar

Raising farmer's income key to better agricultural production: Rajiv Kumar

In a meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, top economists and experts in the country stressed the need for creating new jobs, even as a NITI Aayog task force has found that the statistics on lack of employment may be "overrated".

The 40 economists who interacted with the PM on Wednesday shared their views ranging from macro-economy, agriculture and rural development, employment, health and education, manufacturing and exports, urban development, infrastructure and connectivity.

The meeting, being organised by government think tank NITI Aayog, will be attended by a host of ministers including Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, NITI Aayog functionaries and leading economists.

The meeting was attended by several Union Ministers including Radha Mohan Singh, R K Singh and NITI Aayog Vice Chairman Rajiv Kumar, among others. He said the findings of a task force set up by NITI Aayog to examine employment data were "startling" and that they suggested a "better picture on the jobs front than what people thought". We have done a very large exercise after data analytics and have come out with data in contrast with what the Labour Bureau data show.

Also, there was a unanimous support to the National Medical Commission Bill.

Rajiv Kumar said what emerged clearly out of the meeting was that Prime Minister's call for doubling farmer incomes "is not just a pie in the sky".

Also the meeting is being seen crucial as the upcoming budget is to be presented from early February. It was 7.5 percent in 2014-15.

Various groups interacted amongst themselves and then crystallised their ideas and made presentation before the PM, Kumar said, adding there were experts from all across the country - regional representation, sectoral representation.

"The suggestions from experts included those for the forthcoming budget as well as for longer term structural reforms", said Kumar. With the global economic growth picking up pace, many economists suggested the government to adopt an export-driven growth strategy that will boost domestic economy and lead to job creation, he said.

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