While the farmer population is thinning out of late, there has been a steady rise in the number of agricultural labourers who outnumber cultivators in 2011. The proximate causes for these trends require deeper research. During the last decade, they plausibly reflect the fact that agricultural growth has been sluggish although overall GDP growth has been robust at 7.5 per cent per annum.

The growth of employment in agriculture has been slow and declining and contrasts with better prospects in non-agriculture. Owing to the pressure of population, the average size of land holdings is getting more fragmented over time. Farming at the margin, thus, is getting more unviable, forcing small cultivators to join the growing ranks of agricultural labourers or seek non-agricultural employment. Read More