Crisis in Indian agriculture is widely recognised today. Periodically, the farmers’ anger and the frustrations burst out in the myriad forms of protests. The typical response of the government is to announce yet more schemes, subsidies and more funds.
Every aspect of agriculture, from seed to market, has remained tied up in government regulations and red tape.
Agriculture is the largest “Make in India” and the largest private sector in India. The mindset that is keeping farmers in poverty, is what is preventing India from achieving its true potential as well.
Unless urban India realises the significance of freeing our farmers in Bharat, the promise of a prosperous, free and peaceful India will continue to be illusive.
This Talk outlines the miseries of the agricutural sector and provide an outline to a solution. Unmissable, if you care for India’s prosperity.
Barun Mitra, Writer and Thinker
Barun Mitra is a thinker and writer, who is always exploring ways to translate ideas into possible actions. His key interest is to find ways of generating political capital from the ideals of liberty, peace and prosperity, in order to make these ideals socially and politically viable.
An engineer by training, he is always attracted to ideas and issues in which he has no particular expertise or experience. He firmly believes that the strength of citizenship lies in being able to engage actively on public issues, without being an expert. Sovereignty of citizens depends on this capacity to engage.
Last several years he has been calling for the recognition of property rights as cornerstone of human rights, and been working with grassroots organisations to secure land and property rights for the marginal communities, including tribal villagers. Earlier this year, he had taken the initiative to draft a Farmers Manifesto for Freedom, and is currently involved with a farmers network on a Kisan Satyagraha demanding access to modern science and technologies, including genetically modified crops.
He was the founder and director of Liberty Institute, an independent think tank in New Delhi, from 1996 to 2016. Liberty Institute had received the Templeton Prize for social entrepreneurship in 2003 for their initiative to teach English in remote villages. In 2011, the Empowering India initiative to inform and encourage active citizenship was recognised with the Manthan Prize for innovative use of ICT in South Asia.
He has written opinion articles for publications across the world on a wide range of issues from economics to environment, trade and technology, land and property rights to intellectual property. He has received the Sir Anthony Fisher Award in 2001, the Liberty Torch in 2001, and the Julian Simon Award in 2005, for his writings and advocacy of freedom.
He has been influenced by a range of thinkers, authors and doers. Among the most significant are Tagore and Gandhi at home, and abroad Adam Smith to Ayn Rand.