• The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh today said that the country needs a minimum two per cent growth in food production to meet its demand in 2020-21. 
  • Addressing a workshop on agriculture at Rashtrapati Bhavan today, Dr. Singh said that the food grain production is expected to touch record 250 million tones this year. 
  • He said, strong agriculture sector is necessary for India's food security. The Prime Minister asserted though food grain production has regained momentum in the recent years, but the country cannot afford to be complacent. 
  • He added that this is particularly important in view of growing demand for horticulture and dairy products. Dr. Singh called for paying special attention to the needs of rain-fed farming as these areas contribute more than 80 per cent of oil seeds and pulses grown in the country. 
  • The Prime Minister called upon all stakeholders to come up with technically sound and administratively implementable recommendations for the benefit of agriculture in rain-fed areas.
  • In her inaugural address, the President Mrs. Pratibha Devisingh Patil suggested to set up a separate administrative set up to address the specific problems of rain-fed areas and empower small farmers in these areas. 
  • Mrs. Patil asserted that this area needs thrust to generate a sense of emergency at the government level and promote partnership among various agencies. The President said, this all can be achieved only when people work in unison.