Q.5:- Why is agricultural diversification essential for sustainable livelihoods?
The agricultural diversification means diversification of crop production and shifting of agricultural workforce to other allied activities such as livestock, poultry, fisheries, etc. and non-agriculture sector to raise income and to explore alternative sources of revenues. This is essential because:
1. A substantial portion of Indian farming is dependent on the vagaries of monsoon, making it a risky affair to rely upon solely. Accordingly, the need for diversification is required to enable the farmers to earn from other alternative non-farm occupations. This lessens excess burden on agriculture by reducing disguised unemployment.
2. The kharif season opens up ample opportunities for agricultural employment. However, owing to lack of irrigation facilities, the farmers fail to get gainful employment opportunities during the Rabi season.. Therefore, the need of diversification arises during the Rabi season.
3. Agriculture being over crowded cannot further generate employment opportunities.. Therefore, the prospects of the non-farm sectors should be opened up in the rural areas to provide job opportunities, thereby, diverting workforce from the already crowded agricultural sector.
4. The non farm sector has several segments that possess dynamic linkages. Such linkages enhance the healthy growth of an economy.