Inspite of progressive increased area under irrigation and increased use of high yielding varieties of rice, coupled with increased consumption of chemical fertilizers and pesticides, productivity of rice remains stagnant and unstabilised in recent years. The reason is not far to seek. The main constraint has been the hurried introduction of the undesirable new rice material, the HYVs (dwarfs) on which we based our strategy, replacing even the reputed high yielding rices of the locality, forgetting at the same time unexpected drought situation, under whi9ch the HYVs lowered the yields. In addition, under heavy fertilization and irrigation the HYVs proved susceptible to diseases and pests which cannot be controlled easily, thus again pointing towards reduction of yield. Further, unlike wheat and sugarcane, the concept of ‘wide adaptability’ in rice has a limited scope for application (not exceeding 10 percent of the rice area). This biological force has naturally led to local preferences of different types of rices and socio-economic adjustments, developed in course of time. These considerations explain why rice productivity remains unstabilised and stagnant and calculations did not work. When the base is in itself, weak (meaning the new rice material) a mansion, built on it, must collapse. In planning too, stress was not laid on improving the inexpensive local resources which matter in agriculture. The stress has been more on making Indian Agriculture ‘factory oriented’. Fertilizers and pesticides are produced in factories which may slow down their production or may remain idle for many reasons and at times transportation may be a problem, leading to interruption in the supply of in-puts in the fields at the proper time. Citing examples of Punjab and Haryana and a few others from resourceful localities in support of the HYVs of foreign blood in rice and working out a strategy to extend them elsewhere, where environments are unfavourable to increase productivity (neglecting the superior HYVs of indigenous origin) have been our main draw-back in our approach and hence this action plan. Any action plan drawn up for rice, must take into consideration these lapses. Self-generating economy and building up of local resources alone offer a permanent solution in rice and not the outside support which would always be limited, Conditional and uncertain. Local resources would also include forestry and animal husbandry (for farm power and soil fertility) to restore imbalance, being created in the environmental ecosystem in the typical rice areas. Organic and ecological farming with which the farmers are familiar and which they prefer, finds little place in our research and planning process after 1965. Location specific approach alone can help us in increasing productivity tract-wise, village-wise and individual field-wise.
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