500+ Words Essay on Green Revolution
“Food is the moral right of all who are born into this world.” -Norman Borlaug
The Green Revolution took place in the 1950’s and 1960’s. It was extremely popular in developing countries, including India. It is said to be founded by the administrator, M. S. Swaminathan. The Green Revolution changed the way agriculture was carried out and practised. It made farming an industry. There was the introduction of High Yielding Variety seeds, irrigation facilities, tractors, fertilizers and other forms of mechanisation.
The areas that benefited the most and produced the highest agricultural crop of rice and wheat in India included the states of Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh. Because of the green revolution, the country had an abundant amount of food grains and did not have to depend on imports from other countries anymore.
Essential Components of the Green Revolution
HYV or High Yielding Variety seeds were considered to be the single most prominent contribution of the green revolution. These seeds were highly responsive to chemical fertilizers and grew at the double speed. Their leaves were much more expansive, thus enhancing the process of photosynthesis. They could resist wind damage, and the maturing cycle for the crops was significantly shortened.
Because of the irregular and unseasonal nature of rainfall in India, a system of proper irrigation became very vital for farmers. The importance of groundwater rather than surface water was emphasized. Groundwater was made available at all times to a farmer by the use of a pump or a tube well.
The land under cultivation could not be increased and had to remain the same. So, the only thing that was possible to do was to have many cropping cycles. Chemical fertilizers made this possible by making sure that the crops grew fast enough so that there could be multiple harvests from a single piece of land.
The price of the chemical fertilizers was fixed by the central government at a rate which was lower than its cost of production so as to encourage its usage.
Other significant contributions of the green revolution include the usage of insecticides and pesticides, rural electrification, agricultural universities, etc.
Impact of the Green Revolution
Due to the green revolution, India doubled its crop production. Wheat was the only crop that tripled in its production. The green revolution is also regarded as grain revolution and wheat revolution in India.
Because of such mass production, farmers were able to reap the profits of commercialisation, and they became prosperous with increased earnings.
India became self- sufficient in food grains and not only had it stopped importing, but it had also become eligible for export. Even after the population increase, the per capita net availability of food grains in the country remained appropriate.
Due to farming at such a large scale with various specialised inputs, new industries could form and flourish. Newer industries and factories were set up to meet the increasing demand for insecticides, weedicides, chemical fertilizers, etc.
There was a fear in people that the jobs of labour would be cut due to the shift to mechanisation, but instead, the green revolution made it possible for more than 15 lakh Indians to get job opportunities because of the multiple cropping patterns.
The green revolution made it possible to keep the food prices in the economy low. The phenomenon of demand and supply generally controls prices for a particular good in a nation. Because the stock with the help of HYV seeds was always so high, there was abundant of food available for everyone, and hence prices remained low.
Because of the green revolution, India has been able to reduce its deforestation. This is attributed to the fact that the same amount of land is used every time for cultivation and no extra forests are cleared or burned for farming activities.
The most noticeable impact that green revolution had was on the attitude of Indian farmers. They were considered to be illiterate, backward and traditional. But their open attitude towards adopting technological changes busted this myth and even gave them a higher standard of living.
Criticism against the Green Revolution
Green revolution uses a handful of selected crops because of its performance, and farmers grow them continuously to maintain their profit margins. This has resulted in a lot of other crops being neglected. Even shortages of those frequently grown crops are faced in many parts of the world.
Because of cultivating on the same land again and again, without a break, the soil properties of the land become poor. The soil loses its important nutrients after a while as it does not get enough time to replenish them.
Green revolution included the use of a lot of insecticides and pesticides. These chemicals, if not sprayed with necessary measures, can cause cancer. Twenty thousand people have been a victim of various cancers like leukaemia, breast cancer and ovarian cancer because they were not wearing masks while spraying their fields with insecticides and pesticides.