Pune (Maharashtra), Feb 14: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday called for measures to improve and technologically advance the Indian agricultural sector to make it globally competitive.
Addressing a farmers' rally in Baramati, Modi said that we are presently living in a global economy and competing in global markets, which we must capture.
For that, there must be large-scale improvements in the agro-sector with the infusion of new technology and latest practices to play in the global markets.
In this context, he asked the sugar industry to capture the global markets since India is already the world's second largest producer of the commodity.
"However, the Indian farmer is very skeptical and discerning before adopting any new techniques... He will study at depth before discarding old methods to take up modern practices," Modi said.
Agriculture must also have value-additions which reach and benefit the maximum number of farmers and priority must be given to industries which benefit the rural agro-economy, he said.
Calling for a "holistic approach", Modi discussed various issues to develop the agriculture, stressed on water conservation efforts to get maximum benefits out of minimum rainfall and market logistics support.
Referring to Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) President Sharad Pawar, who also shared the dais at the inauguration of the Appasaheb Pawar Hall, Modi said though they may be political rivals, both had a vision to take Indian agriculture to great heights.
"He is a very senior and experienced leader... Not a single day passes when we don't speak over the phone... I have a lot to learn from his wisdom. We may hail from different parties, but our national interests are common," Modi said, heaping praises on the senior Maharashtra leader.