Green Revolution and its impact on major crops of India


The Green Revolution was initiated in the 1960’s to address the issue of malnutrition in the developing world. The technology of the Green Revolution involved bio-engineered seeds that worked in conjunction with chemical fertilizers and heavy irrigation to increase crop yields.

Green Revolution was largely confined in wheat crop and in northern India such as Punjab, resulting in a limited contribution to overall economic development of the country. On the contrary, the agricultural growth in the 1980s (the second wave of the Green Revolution) involved almost all the crops including rice and covered the whole country, it enabled to raise rural income and alleviate rural poverty substantially. Such a rise of rural India as a “market‟ for non-agricultural products and services was an important pre-requisite for the rapid economic growth based on non-agricultural sectors‟ development in India after the 1990s.

Green Revolution is based on:-

(i) improved seeds of high yielding varieties,
(ii) adequate and assured supply of water for irrigation, and
(iii) increased and appropriate application of chemical fertilizers for increasing agricultural production.

India has failed to extend the concept of high-yield value seeds to all crops or all regions. In terms of crops, it remain largely confined to foodgrains only, not to all kinds of agricultural produce. In regional terms, only Punjab and Haryana states showed the best results of the Green Revolution. The eastern plains of the River Ganges in West Bengal state also showed reasonably good results. But results were less impressive in other parts of India. Those states which were originally rich derived the benefits of Green Revolution, e.g., Punjab, Haryana and Western U.P. As the benefits of new technology concentrated mainly in these areas, other Indian states could not match them.

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