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Comprehensive Apprehension of Agriculture In The Context of Nepal

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Couple of days ago, the government made a bold decision to test the agricultural products that are imported to Nepal right at the border between Nepal and India. The topic was the matter of table talk, tea talk and a debatable matter that entire nation was in its discussion. But have you ever wondered how we became so much independent to foreign lands for the agricultural products? When we, ourselves, preach out to the world that NEPAL IS AN AGRO BASED COUNTRY. Aren’t we fooling to the world then?

A country where 36% of its major GDP contributor is agriculture. A country where 30% of its lands are cultivable. A country where 65.6% of people are dependent on agriculture. But when we count the ratio of import to export then import values always exceeds the export values. Now does that make sense calling ourselves an agriculture dependent country? 

Where did we lack? How did we go wrong? There may be several answers to highlight the problems but never became accountable with our action for its solutions. Possibly there could be many answers too, but now it’s high time to realize the major resolution for this problem and that is our YOUTH. Yes, youth who have equal power to change this direction of nation towards the progressiveness. 

If we see the present trend among the youth, their career choice inclines mostly towards medical, engineering, management and the IT sector. But it is never seen that such trend of youth living in agro based country are willing to work in sector of agriculture. Thus, the country is in need of youth who can actually not just see the opportunity in the agricultural sector but also can create opportunities for others. And the fact of recent shows that 40 billion NRS being invested in import of agro based product got increased to 45 billion just in time lapse of 1 year. Now, this need of youth into agriculture is much needed in Nepal.

Why do we need our youth in agriculture ? If we see the farms of our country we find mostly aged farmers working there. So aging of farmers has become a major drawback that is hindering agricultural upliftment in context of Nepal. So, we need masses of young, vibrant and innovative mindsetswho can flourish the industry via their ideas and visions. Not just that youth being engaged to modern technology can bring advancement in method of agricultural practice. This will surely enlarge the ratio of production inside the country. Also Nepal’s product has not been able to get its market in proper way so if our agricultural practice gets digitized this will surely create new avenue to sell our product not just in national level but also in international arena.  

Our youth have this misconception that agriculture is not an attractive avenue of employment. But a recent study shows that it’s the only platform that reduces poverty four times more than any other sector. And poverty reduction has direct linkup with employment opportunity. There are lots of thoroughfare where opportunities can be created through agriculture. We lack manual workers, good seeds producing expertise, chemist, proper pesticides and insecticides producing company and many more other. So, agriculture does not just limit in between production scale but it equally sustains other platform that helps it to grow ahead. Thus, our youth being connected in a direct or indirect way could contribute their best for proper upliftment of agricultural sector.

For the present aspiring entrepreneurs, agriculture could be the best way to scale up themselves. It’s not so much risky venture to invest into.

The fact is quite undeniable that agriculture has a lot to offer to a country. But due to several factors, Nepal is lagging behind. Now this ripple effect is yet to be created that will definitely make Nepal stand strong. The effort is to be made from individual basis. Our lands should not be used for urbanization purpose but should be to yield crops in maximum way.

Our curriculum also need to highlight the scope of agriculture in the context of Nepal, and motivate our youth to dwell in this sector. Government should have proper provision to make plans and policies to foster this sector and reward to those who have been creating impact through this sector. So it’s a much needed time that our Youth should know the importance of Agriculture sector and contribute the best way they can. 

-Madhu Dhakal