[Answered] According to research, investing in agricultural research, development, education, and extension (ARDE) yields much greater returns compared to other areas like fertilizer subsidy, power subsidy, education, or roads. Elaborate on this and suggest ways to increase the emphasis on ARDE in India.

Introduction: Give a brief introduction about ARDE.
Body: Why is it useful and what are ways to increase ARDE empahasis in India
Conclusion: Conclude with ARDE being efficient in India.

 According to ICRIER research, investing in agri-R&D generates substantially higher returns than, for example, spending on education, roads, fertilizer subsidies, or power subsidies. So, even in the face of climate change, ARDE (agricultural research, development, education, and extension) can assist achieve higher agricultural production.

Why ARDE is essential for India?

  • Efficient use of resources: ARDE can help use scarce resources to best use especially natural resources like water, air, and soil.
  • New irrigation practices: Large amounts of water can be saved with precision agriculture techniques like drip irrigation. For instance, implementing sensor-based irrigation systems provides automated control, increasing the effectiveness of resource use.
  • Innovation & Technology: The use of nanotechnology and fertigation can help reduce fertilizer subsidies and carbon footprint.
  • New agriculture practices: Research has shown that mulching contributes towards higher soil organic carbon (SOC), reducing GHG emissions and water consumption.

What are the ways to increase the emphasis on ARDE in India?

  • Fund allocation: There is a crucial need to scale up the allocation of funds for ARDE. Research from ICRIER shows an increase in spending in absolute terms from 2005-06 to 2019-20. There is a need for more investment from the corporate sector in ARDE as the government is the largest spender. Various reports suggest that government needs to
  • Priority Areas: Need to give priority to sectors like animal husbandry, dairy development, and fisheries sectors which have more growth potential and are carbon emissions generating sectors.
  • Political Will: Rationalising the subsidies offered by both Centre and States for fertilizer and power can help channelise the savings to the ARDE sector. This requires immense political will, and dialogue with farmers and their organisations. The reduction of subsidies will help India to achieve its Panchamrit goals and SDG.


ARDE is crucial for the efficient management of resources, improving water use efficiency, and innovative farming practices. Investment in ARDE can help India deal with food and nutritional security which can result in less GHG emissions.

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