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States » North

Punjab needs to transform from agriculture to manufacturing, service sector: Dr Vishandass

Amritsar, Feb 21 (UNI) Former Chairman of Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices Ashok Vishandass has emphasised that Punjab's need is to transform from agricultural sector to manufacturing and service sector to attain long term growth with sustainability, which can be done with the efforts to impart skills amongst the masses along with the inclusion of technology (vigyan).
Stating this while delivering his address at the inaugural session of two day UGC national seminar on 'Contemporary Issues in Punjab Economy - a roadmap ahead' at Guru Nanak Dev University (GNDU) here, Dr Vishandass said that Punjab can reclaim its old glory of front runner of holistic development by moving on the path of strcutrural transformation.
He said that today there is a dire need for Punjab farming to enhance agricultural productivity for generating more income. He emphasized that the need is to reorient governance to enhance farmers’ incomes by placing their prosperity at the centre of the development agenda. He said that world is changing rapidly and Punjab needs to work in a manner to keep pace with the changes.
Dr Vishandass said that overall, strategy for Punjab agriculture needs to shift towards policies for income augmentation and wealth creation. He said that creation of more and better jobs opportunities can bring prosperity for the societies.Therefore, the need is to make strategies for wealth creation by producing more and more valuable services and products.
He said that in the changing scenario, the need is also to meet the challenges and opportunities of mechanization in different sectors of the economy, especially agriculture. While expressing his concerns over the excessive use of urea, he emphasied about its proper utilisation to maintain the health of the soil.
He said that today there is need for holistic policies for inclusive growth. A coherent agricultural trade policy ought to be rooted for the long term food and nutritional security concerns of the country alongwith promoting farmers interest in the global markets.
Speaking on the occasion, 15th Finance Commission member Ajay Narayan Jha said that Punjab is facing weak fiscal health and the state is consistently lagging behind the all India growth rate in GSDP. He said that there is an urgent need for fiscal reformsin the state especially to fulfill the development needs of Punjab to arrest its deterioration in overall ranking in the country in terms of GSDP.
UNI XC DB 2328
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