Presentation on theme: "In-depth Surveys in the Agricultural Census in India Anand Kumar Ojha, Deputy Director Agricultural Census Division Ministry of Agriculture India."— Presentation transcript:
In-depth Surveys in the Agricultural Census in India Anand Kumar Ojha, Deputy Director Agricultural Census Division Ministry of Agriculture India
Introduction The diversity of climatic condition, the wide spectrum of crops, plantations, allied activities and vast untapped potential makes Indian Agriculture an enchanting challenge to policy makers and investors. The agro-climatic conditions vary from hill regions of Himalayas, gangetic plains of central India, plateau and hills of southern, western and eastern India, dry areas of western India. With these diversities, the Indian Agriculture, which contributes 23% to GDP, is a main source of survival for the rural populace. Because of the historical importance on agriculture, land revenue was one of the main sources of the State income. This had necessitated maintenance of land records relating to cultivation and other parameters.
Introduction (Contd..) India is one of the few countries in the world who has developed a sound system of land records including village maps and numberd parcels of land with identified boundaries. The collection of agriculture statistics in India based on the land records Therefore, the Agriculture Census is conducted mainly on the information available in the land records. This type of information is suitably re-tabulated by difference size of operational holdings, social groups (like Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Others) and gender in Agriculture Census. The details of land records, which are maintained by village revenue agency ( “Patwaris”) include tenancy, land use, irrigation, sources of irrigation, crops grown (irrigated & unirrigated) and spread of holdings of individual operators. Wherever, the land is operated by more than one operational holding of different households, the system of joint holdings are recorded in the land records. Land operated by institutions are also separately indicated.
Introduction (Contd..) The first Agriculture Census was conducted in 1970-71 under the able guidance of FAO. In view of the fast changes in structure of holdings, India follows the quinquennial periodicity to conduct Agriculture Census rather than decennial, as recommended by the FAO. So far, Censuses has been conducted with reference years 1970-71, 176-77, 1980-81, 1985-86, 1990-91, 1995-96 and 2000-01. Currently, we have launched the next Agriculture Census 2005-06 and have also initiated steps to streamline the Census taking with reference year 2010-2011 (WCA 2010) for which a Technical Committee has been setup to examine various issues like sampling design, integration of different surveys/censuses being conducted in the country. In Agriculture Census, the reference period is the agricultural year i.e. from July to June.
Methodology The Agriculture Census of operational holdings follow census-cum-sample approach. The entire Census taking is divided into three phases. Under Phase-I, we collect the basic data on number of operational holdings and area operated on complete enumeration basis. In Phase-II, we collect details on different characteristics of operational holdings like tenancy, land use, cropping pattern,etc. Initially, this was also done on complete enumeration basis upto 1980-81. However, due to administrative reasons, we restricted to the data collection to 20% sample. Here, 20% of villages are selected randomly and all the holdings of the selected villages are enumerated. Under Phase-III, a separate survey called “Input Survey” is conducted in 7% villages to elicit information on inputs use like fertilizers, livestock, agricultural implements and machinery, flow of agriculture credit besides multiple cropping. This information is collected by different size groups of holding like marginal (below 1 ha.), small (1 – 2 ha.), semi-medium (2 – 4 ha.), medium (4 – 10 ha.) and large (10 ha. above) holdings. However, in phase-I and Phase-II the information is collected by 10 size classes of holdings i.e. below 0.5 ha., 0.5 – 1.0 ha., 1.0 – 2.0 ha., 2.0 – 3.0 ha., 3.0 – 4.0 ha., 4.0 – 5.0 ha., 5.0 – 7.5 ha., 7.5 – 10.0 ha., 10.0 – 20.0 ha and above 20.0 ha.
Methodology (Contd..) For Phase-I & Phase-II operation, the country has been classified as i) land recorded area and ii) non-land recorded area. In land recorded area wherein the land records are updated every year, the census is conducted by retabulation of information available in the land records. This constitute 90% of the total area in the country. The remaining 10% area, known as “non-land recorded area” wherein the land records are not updated on year to year basis. In these areas, the data on operational holdings are collected through sample survey. In the non-land recorded area a sample of 20% villages are selected and a sample of 25% holdings are further selected from these 20% villages for collection of detailed data on operational holdings.
Coverage The data collected in different phase of Agriculture Census are: 1. Agriculture Census phase-I, Number of operational holdings and area operated; 2. Agriculture Census phase-II: tenure of holding, tenancy, land use, irrigation status, sources of irrigation, number of wells and tube wells, cropped area, dispersal of area; 3. Agricultural Census Phase-III (Input Survey): Number of parcels of land, multiple cropping by irrigated area and unirrigated area, use of chemical fertilizers by nutrients, use of bio-fertilizers, livestock, agriculture implements and machinery, agriculture credit, use of certified seeds.
Improvements During the course of Census taking since 1970-71, we have made improvements in coverage of Agriculture Census. Initially, we started collecting data on tenure of land holding, tenancy, land use, irrigation including source of irrigation, number of wells and tube wells, area under different crops, dispersal of land. In 1976-77, we separately tabulated the area operated by institutional holdings. From Agriculture Census 1980-81, the data on different social groups, like, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes have been collected. In 1990-91, the electronic data processing was introduced in some parts of the country. In 1995-96, the entire tabulation work was done electronically to generate data from lowest administrative level. In order to identify the women participation in agriculture, data on operational holdings has been tabulated by gender (male and female). In 2000-01, the community (village) level data giving infrastructure facilities available in each village was collected. The information related to public godowns, public cold storage, fertilizer/pesticide dealers, seed dealers, credit institutions, veterinary centers, regulated markets and road facilities are collected. Also, in view of the importance given for horticulture crops, the collection of data on individual horticulture crops grown by the operational holdings had been emphasized.
Household Surveys Wherever the data are not available from records, we go in for household sample surveys in Agricultural Census to collect the desired information. At least in two phases of Census taking in India we go for in-depth surveys. 1. Agricultural Census Phase 1 & II in non-land recorded area: As explained earlier, about 10% of area in the country the land record system is permanently settled. Ie., to say that the land records are not regularly updated on year to year basis and the land record is standardized for the purpose of land revenue. The land revenues are fixed on ownership basis without giving regard to irrigation potential or crops grown in those areas. In these areas Government of India have established a system called “EARAS” – Establishment of Agency for Recording Agricultural Statistics- who collect information on sample basis for the agricultural statistics. Under Agricultural Census also, the villages are selected (20% villages) and a sub-sample of 25% operational holding in these villages are approached for detailed enquiry for data collection. Suitable estimation procedure are applied to arrive at the population totals.
In-depth surveys (Contd..) 2.Input Survey: This is the third phase of Census taking in India. The entire operation is entirely based on households sample survey approach. The operational holding listed in Agricultural Census in phase I will form the basic frame for data collection. However, for generation of quick estimates, the sample number of villages to be covered under this survey is 7% of villages in each stratum. The enumerators are selected from the Statistical personnel of the Government who are well trained for the purpose. Before launch of the survey, each person is given sufficient training..
In-depth surveys (contd..) The sampling procedure is as follows: 7% villages in the lowest administrative unit (Tehsil or Block) are selected. In each selected villages a maximum of 4 operational holdings each from marginal (below 1 ha.), small (1 – 2 ha.), semi-medium (2 – 4 ha.), medium (4 – 10 ha.) and large (10 ha. above) holdings are selected at random and details of multiple cropping, usage of fertilizers, live stock, Agri. Implements and machinery, agricultural credit are collected. One may ask on why only four holdings in each size groups. I would like to inform that we undertook detailed pilot studies before launching the sample survey operations in Input Survey. The pilot studies were conducted by our national Institute on Agricultural Statistics – Indian Agricultural Statistics Research Institute, New Delhi, India. The basic assumption was that 20 of operational holdings were sufficient sample in selected villages and that being homogenized at size group level. Average of four holdings in a size group will serve a suitable representation to that size group.
In-depth surveys (contd..) The village level, tehsil/block level estimates are generated using standard estimation procedures and added up to get District/State and All India estimates. 3.The data on community development ie., Information on Village Infrastructure is also collected on the basis of surveys in all the villages in the country although we cover only 20% villages in the non-land record States in Phase I & II. In this survey, ‘village’ is the statistical unit. The information is collected on ten items like no. of community ponds, no. of public godowns, no. of public cold storage, no. of fertilizers/pesticides dealers, no. of seed dealers, no. of formal agricultural credit institutions, no. of veterinary / livestock centre, no. regulated mandis, no. of agricultural credit society and whether village is connected by all weather motorable road.
Experiences The Implementing agencies in various States of the country have their own priorities and hence sometimes the data collection is delayed, mostly due to elections, drought, floods etc. The enormity of the number of schedules (100 million approximately) to be tabulated makes the task gigantic. Until the Agriculture Census 1990-91, the tabulation of data was done manually and partly electronically. After fieldwork is over, all the schedules are scrutinized manually. Inspite of detailed guidelines, we feel lot of problems in EDP in view of errors coming up at validation stage. Our experience has helped us to suitably modify the process of manual scrutiny, auto-correction at different stages which helped in successful completion of the Census operations
Future Plans As Agriculture Census was not supported by any legislation except general guidelines under Official Statistics Act, we are trying to bring out legislation for the conduct of Agriculture Census in India. It is hoped that legislation may come into force before 2010. We have also formed a Technical Committee to look into the following aspects for improvement of Agriculture Census in India including legislation. 1.In view of the entirely different methodology and concepts used in the Agricultural Census and Population Census in India, the issue of integrating these two censuses need to be looked into in detail before any decision is taken. 2. Merging of other censuses like Livestock Census, Irrigation Census, etc would also be considered. 3. Integrating Acqua-culture holdings with Agricultural Holdings for combined survey under Agriculture Census needs detailed discussions in India. 4. The re-tabulation of information on land holdings as has been done till now in India is likely to be continued for the future censuses also subject to the recommendations of the Technical Committee constituted for the Agriculture Census, 2010-11.