Kurukshetra :- Rural Non-Farm Sector (Part -2) July 2019 (Download PDF)


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Rural Tourism: An Asset to Non-Farm Sector: More than one-fifth of rural households w/self-employment in agriculture have income less than poverty line. Interventions to enhance farm productivity are easier said than done, as they require consistent long-term efforts. A NITI Aayog paper published in year 2017 states that contrary to common perception about predominance of agriculture in rural economy, about two third of rural income is now generated in non-agricultural activities. Share of agriculture in rural output is merely 39 % rest is contributed by manufacturing, construction & service sectors.

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Rural Non-Farm Sector: Kurukshetra July 2019 (Examrace - Dr. Manishika Jain) UPSC/NABARD

Rural Non-Farm Sector: Kurukshetra July 2019 (Examrace - Dr. Manishika Jain) UPSC/NABARD

Importance of Rural Non-Farm Sector

  • It may facilitate employment growth.
  • It may prevent many rural people from migrating to urban areas.
  • It offers more remunerative activities to supplement agricultural income.
  • It provides a means for rural poor to cope when farming fails.

Role of Rural Tourism

  • As per Ministry of Tourism (MoT), any form of tourism that showcases rural life, art, culture & heritage at rural locations, thereby benefiting local community economically & socially as well as enabling interaction between tourists & locals for a more enriching tourism experience can be termed as rural tourism.
  • Rural Circuit Development has been included among thirteen thematic circuits identified under ‘Swadesh Darshan’ (Central Govt. scheme for integrated development of theme based tourist circuits).

Mapping Rural Resources for Tourism

  • MoT has a USP (rural resource), it has attempted to divide rural resources into three categories:
  • Resources by virtue of geographical & climatic characteristic of region, flora & fauna, rivers, landscape, scenic beauty etc.
  • Aspects of rural culture like village folklore, handicrafts, textile products, social bonds etc.
  • Farm produce & practices like sowing, harvesting etc.

Geographical & Climatic Attribute (Eco-Tourism/responsible Tourism)

Homestays in Kalap Village (Uttarakhand)

  • An example of such destination is Kalap, a village located in Grahwal region of Uttarakhand, which offers stunning scenic beauty.

Fireflies Festival in Purushwadi Village (Maharashtra)

  • Purushwadi is a tribal village, situated in Western Ghats, in Akole district of Maharashtra.

Cultural Facet (Cultural Tourism)

Stone Craft & Pattachitra in Raghurajpur Village (Odihsa)

  • Tourists can be encouraged to purchase directly from local artists. By doing this tourists can be responsible & community oriented as they encourage a unique local art form, give confidence to a struggling artisan community & walk away w/a beautiful painting as a souvenir.

Tribal Cultural Trails in Bishnoi Village (Rajasthan)

  • One such example is village of Bishnoi tribe near Jodhpur in Rajasthan
Map location show in Bishnoi,Saray Mohana &Pochampalli

Map Location Show in Bishnoi, Saray Mohana &Pochampalli

Map location show in Bishnoi, Saray Mohana &Pochampalli

Textile Village Tour in Saray Mohana Village (Varanasi, Up) &Pochampalli (Telangana)

  • Saray Mohana is a village in Varanasi District of Uttar Pradesh. It is known for its silk weaving as most of locals indulge in this craft.

Farm Produce & practices (Farm/Agro/Horti Tourism)

  • Farm/Agro/Horti-tourism comprises of act of visiting a working horticulture farm (fruit orchard or vegetable garden or ornamental garden) for purpose of education, recreation or active involvement in activities of farm.

Mangoes in Malihabad (UP), Ratnagiri (Maharashtra)

  • Mango tourism is an experience consisting of travelling to mango orchards in bullock carts, guided walk around farm & climbing mango trees to pluck mangoes & eating them.
  • Vineyards in Nasik (Maharashtra), Nandi Hills (Karnataka)
  • Wine tourism consists of visits to vineyards & may include wine festivals & events. Visit to wineries located in dominant wine producing regions such as Nandi Hills, Doddaballapur, Bangalore, Karnataka & Taluka Igatpuri, Nashik, Maharashtra can be a rural tourism endeavour.
Map location show in Bangalore nashik,Maharashtra

Map Location Show in Bangalore Nashik, Maharashtra

Map location show in Bangalore nashik, Maharashtra

Capacity Building & Govt. Schemes

  • Community mobilization & building capacities in rural areas are very important as rural tourism can provide livelihoods to those who can participate in tourism, whether in hospitality or in craft or in any other allied services that a tourist requires.

Co-ordination among Stakeholders

  • Scheme of e-tourist visa that allows visa approval on email thru e-application within 72 hours of application has eased foreign tourist entry in India.
  • Hodka Village Resort in Rann of Kutch, Gujarat is one of most successfully implemented rural tourism initiatives.

Marketing Strategies for Rural Tourism

  • Promotions can be done thru govt. magazines, weekly news letters, television Govt. portals & e-mails.
  • Involvement of artisans in Dilli Haat, mega craft melas in diff. cities across country has been facilitated by MoT.


  • It can revive many traditional crafts which are dying a slow death. Socially, it can open rural mindset to new thru & ideas from outside world. Urban areas are characterised by monotony, fatigue job stress, pollution; rural tourism can act as stress buster.

NGOs & Private Sector in Non-Farm Sector

  • It is this context that finding an alternative employment opportunity is imperative, activities which are not based on agriculture alone, known as non-farm activities, can become a game changer.
  • Activities somehow related to agriculture itself, like fishing, forestry, animal husbandry etc. are commonly included in non-farm activities sector.
  • By providing supplementary & non-seasonal employment to small & marginal farmers in rural areas, non-farm activities can help reduce income inequality & enhance quality of life in rural areas.
  • Diversification of income gives a household more options to improve their livelihood & raise their living standard.
  • Growth in employment has a scope to employ a large number of people, especially sector, as they participate much more intensively in non-farm activities.
  • Non-Farm activities serve as an alternate source of income for those who were hitherto employed in agricultural farms.

Govt. Programme & Policies

  • There are examples & indicators that Govt. is actively working to support livehood opportunities for rural people for wage employment as well as for skill development.
  • GOI has launched programmes like Skill India (a campaign launched in 2015 to train 40 cr. People in diff. skills by 2022), National Skill Development Mission, National Skill Qualification Framework (NSQF), Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojna (to enable Indian youth to take up industry relevant skill training), National Apprenticeship Promotion Scheme (to promote apprenticeship) & Community Colleges (offering short term & long term job oriented courses.
  • NRLM Young Professionals (YPs) scheme was developed under NRLM w/an objective to provide a well structured exposure to Young Professionals in diff. thematic operations of NRLM.
  • This scheme would help professionals to learn & acquire requisite skills as well as competencies to help in eradication of poverty.
  • Pradhan Mantri MUDRA Yojana (PMMY) is introduced to provide loans up to Rs. 10 lakh to non-corporate, non-farm small/micro enterprises.
  • Non-Governmental Organizations
  • NGOs performs variety of services & humanitarian functions, brings citizen’s concerns to Govt. advocates & monitors policies & encourages political participation thru provision of information.
  • Role of NGO is to complement services of Govt. they are now attracting professionals from diff. fields to implementers of developmental plans.
  • Community based NGOs interact w/local people making them their member, build relations of co-operation & trust w/them.
  • They understand their issues & try to convince them to initiate non-farm livelihood opportunities to meet their needs.
  • There are more than 5.6 cr. women attached to 49.7 lakhs SHGs in country. Many of these SHGs are in non-farm sector.
  • NGOs can provide training in soft skills w/help of digital tools to rural population, which would help them in accessing quality inputs & crop advisory for many of non-farm activities. To address problem of unemployment among rural youth.
  • NGOs & private organizations are expected to join hands to help Govt. in its mission. NGOs can help create direct link w/Govt. for marketing of goods produced by rural youth.

Private Sector

  • Private sector companies w/trained social workers possess requisite skill to assess problems of rural people & to quickly plan suitable interventions. They can mentor & motivate rural people to participate in their development programmes.
  • Private sector has come forward & they have set up Kaushal Vikas Kendra to provide vocational training to semi literate youth from poor economic & social background in a variety of trades, which are in great demand in industry.


  • It is important that all stakeholders come together & develop an integrated farm & non farm sector development plan w/a common goal of enhancing rural household income.
  • Governmental Organizations, Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs), Policy makers, Private Sector, CSR representatives, Academician, Researchers & Rural Residents themselves, can play a significant role in this context.
  • They can help identify viable non-farm activities & linkages of these non-farm activities w/farm activities already being undertaken in rural areas.

- Published/Last Modified on: August 18, 2019


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