Gujarat registered negative growth in agriculture in 2012-13: CAG

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Gandhinagar, Apr 1: The Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) has observed several deficiencies in the schemes implemented by Gujarat government for agriculture sector and noted that the state had registered negative growth in this sector in 2012-13.

In its audit report of agriculture sector tabled in the Assembly yesterday, the CAG stated that though Gujarat did better than the national average growth rate in agriculture, it had registered negative growth during 2012-13.

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During the 11th five year plan period (2007-12) the average agriculture growth rate of Gujarat was 5.49 per cent per annum as compared to all India average growth rate of 4.06 per cent per annum.

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As against 21.64 per cent growth in 2010-11 and 5.02 per cent growth in 2011-12, Gujarat has registered -6.96 per cent growth in 2012-13, which is the first year of 12th Five Year Plan, stated the CAG report. While conducting the performance audit of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojna (RKVY) implemented in Gujarat, CAG observed several deficiencies and non-achievement of targets.

The CAG stated that Gujarat government has missed the seed production target by a great margin even after spending more than Rs 3.5 crore between 2008 and 2012 on the project of providing quality seeds to farmers.

The CAG noted that "against the targeted production of 19,000 quintals of quality seed of groundnut, wheat and pearl millet, the actual production was only 5,524 quintals, and the same was sold to farmers.

Thus, notwithstanding the expenditure of Rs 3.54 crore, seed production remained at 29.07 per cent only." The CAG also criticised the state government for not conducting any evaluation of results after distributing these seeds among farmers.

"No evaluation was done to ascertain the extent of improved productivity by providing quality seeds to the farmers," said the report.

In its observation about the Animal Husbandry sector, the CAG expressed dissatisfaction about the non-availability of data to assess the claims of government in achieving targets. The report also summed-up that targets in this sector remained 'largely unachieved'.

PTI

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