Kurukshetra - Back

Rural Non-Farm Sector

What are non-farm sectors in rural economy?

1. Rural non-farm sector is important to sustain the rural economy as there is a growing need to support the farm sector with other sources of income and employment.

2. Non-agricultural activities include – mining, construction, transport, trade, handicrafts, etc.

How are rural non-farm sectors beneficial?

1. Rural non-farm sector mitigates the instability of the agricultural sector.

2. They provide backward and forward linkages to agricultural activities.

3. They help rural households in diversification of the income sources.

4. They reduce migration to urban areas by providing ample employment opportunities.

5. They improve standard of living.

6. They also reduce rural-urban divide.

7. A thriving rural economy can contribute to the nation’s growth.

Which are the steps taken by Government for strengthening rural economy?

1. The Government has introduced several schemes related to wage employment and skill development.

2. The schemes are helping rural people secure employment and organise Self-Help Groups with women members at village and national levels.

3. Ministry of Textiles has developed schemes like National Handloom Development Programme, Weavers Mudra Scheme to support artisans and rural enterprises.

4. Swachh Bharat Mission is a community-led programme to encourage cleanliness and hygiene across rural areas.

Where are rural non-farm sectors important?

1. Food processing – It adds value to the primary product of agriculture. Packaged and processed items are distributed nationally and internationally.

2. Handlooms and Handicrafts – They provide a rich tradition in the form of beautifully woven cloth and intricate work of art from different parts. Examples include – Cane and bamboo crafts (Assam), Zari and Chikankari works (Uttar Pradesh), mirror work and puppets (Rajasthan), Bandhej (Gujarat), etc.

3. Rural tourism – It is significant way to showcase rural life, art, culture and heritage at rural locations. It brings foreign exchange for the country. It helps in creation of jobs and infrastructure and prosperity of other Rural Non-Farm Sector.

Why does rural non-farm sector need focus?

1. In India, agriculture is the primary sector for most rural households, but it is difficult to sustain only on agriculture.

2. There is increasing need for rural areas to advance both economically and socially and bring a development which is inclusive.

3. So, sectors other than agriculture also need to be focussed to bring the needed inclusive development.