Rural areas should be glamorized for nation's development: NABARD chief at TAPMI event

11:21 AM Jan 17, 2023 | Team Udayavani |

Manipal: Rural areas may not be glamorous for most people. However, for the development of the nation, the rural parts should be transformed into glamorous destinations and the youth should innovate in this regard, opined the Chairman of the National Bank for Agricultural and Rural Development (NABARD) Shaji K.V.


He was delivering a special lecture on the 40th T. A. Pai Memorial Lecture organised on the occasion of the Founder’s Day of T A Pai Management Institute (TAPMI) held at Valleyview Hotel, Manipal on Monday.

The development gap between rural and urban areas has widened in many sectors including infrastructure. To bridge this gap, NABARD is working towards the comprehensive development of rural areas, he said.

Governments are also convinced of the need for rural development. Thus, rural development is likely to get more priority in the next budget as well, he said.

After the Covid pandemic, the number of people returning to rural areas has increased and many have engaged themselves in agriculture, he observed.


Touching upon the issue of food security, Shaji K V said, the world is looking towards India for food security, and India also needs to be prepared in this regard. Along with rural development, it is possible to contribute more to food security by giving priority to growing millet crops. He said that the central government has declared this year as the year of millets.

Rural transformation is necessary

Digitalization of rural economy and technological improvements are needed in rural areas. Financial self-sufficiency programs should be introduced to improve the standard of living of people in rural areas. Along with community empowerment, infrastructure development, and investments should be raised. Startups that complement rural development should be created, he said.

Greater contribution to GDP

In 2019-20, the rural economy contributed 40 percent to the country’s GDP. Urbanization is also happening in rural areas. This will also complement the development of the country. By 2047, rural economy is expected to contribute Rs 139 lakh crores to the GDP, he said.

Challenges and solutions

There are many challenges in rural areas such as land fragmentation issues, rain-fed agriculture, lack of crop diversity, lack of infrastructure for harvesting, non-implementation of technology, non-availability of food processing units on the expected scale, and inadequate management of agricultural waste. In order to find a solution to these, there should be more investment in agriculture-based research and development and lab research outcomes should be effectively transferred to the farmland. Also, more employment opportunities should be created and rural finance should be improved, he said.

Promoting cashless economy

NABARD is implementing 15 pilot projects in collaboration with various banks to prioritize cashless transactions in rural areas. Transparency increases when all transactions become cashless. NABARD is working hard for the upgradation of rural infrastructure and technology under the Financial Inclusion Fund, he said.

‘T A Pai was a visionary’

MAHE Pro Chancellor Dr. H.S.Ballal, in his speech, termed the late T. A. Pai a visionary and recalled his contributions to political and economic spheres for the common man. T A Pai, as a member of Parliament, had efficiently handled the portfolios of Railways, Heavy Industries, Steel, and Mining portfolios. Despite being a politician, he never thought about the next election. Instead, he always focused on improving the future of people. He also served as the Chairman of the Food Corporation of India. Besides this, he also worked in a high position at Syndicate Bank.

Manipal Media Network Ltd. Executive Chairman T. Satish U. Pai felicitated the long-serving professors and senior management officials of TAPMI.

On this occasion, MAHE Pro Vice-Chancellor (Management, Law, Humanities and Social Sciences) and Director of TAPMI Prof. (Dr) Madhu Veeraraghavan was honored with a gold medal for excellence in research.



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