Agri households average earnings grew to over Rs 1 lakh in FY16

Mumbai: Indian farmers have turned lakhpati with an annual income of Rs 1,07,172 on average, but about 52 per cent of them continue to be indebted, a survey by the National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (Nabard) showed.

Agricultural households accounting for 48 per cent of rural households earned Rs 1,07,172 during 2015-16 from cultivation, livestock, nonfarm sector activities and wages/ salaries, according to a survey on financial inclusion conducted by the agricultural and rural lender.

The survey defined farm households as families having more than Rs 5,000 as value of produce from agricultural operations in the year preceding the survey. For rural households, the annual income stood at Rs 96,708 on average.

At these levels, farm income grew at a compounded rate of 12 per cent per annum from Rs 77,112 in 2012-13, according to an assessment by the National Sample Survey Office. The survey showed that income levels for 19 out of 29 states were above all-India average and 15 states recorded annual compound growth of over 10.5 per cent between 2012-13 and 2015-16.

Conducted with 2015-16 as the reference year, the survey covered 40,327 rural households.

The average income for households engaged in non-agricultural activities was Rs 87,228.

But the level of indebtedness among farming families was still higher, the survey showed. Incidence of Indebtedness (IOI), which is a proportion of households having outstanding debt on the date of the survey, was 52.5 per cent and 42.8 per cent for agricultural and non-agricultural households. All-India IOI of all rural households taken together stood at 47.4 per cent.

Apart from assessing the income levels of rural households, the survey mapped aspects such as debt, savings, investment, insurance, pension, and financial aptitude and behaviour of individuals.

While 88.1 per cent rural households and 55 per cent agricultural households reported having a bank account, average saving per annum per household was Rs 17,488. About 26 per cent of agricultural households and 25 per cent of non-agricultural households were found to have been covered under insurance.

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