Answer :

Land resources in India faces different types of environmental problems, these are:

Dependence on Erratic Monsoon

• Irrigation covers only 33% of cultivated area in India. The crop production in rest of the cultivated land directly depends on rain.

• Thus, poor performance of the South-West Monsoon can have adverse effect on agricultural output.

• Moreover, rainfall in drought-prone areas is too meagre and highly unreliable. In addition, flash floods are often triggered by the rains.

• Hence, dependence on Monsson makes agricultural and land resource vulnerable to both drought and floods.

Low Productivity

• The yield of crops in India is low in comparison to the international level.

• Per hectare output of most crops such as rice, wheat, cotton and oilseeds in India is much lower than that of the U.S.A., Russia and Japan.

• Also because of the high pressure on the land resources, the labour productivity in Indian agriculture is also very low in comparison to international level.

Lack of Commercialisation

• Large number of farmers produce crops for self-consumption, as these farmers do not have enough land resources to produce more than their requirement.

• Most of the small and marginal farmers grow food grains, which are meant for their own family consumption.

• Modernisation and commercialisation of agriculture have, however, taken place in irrigated areas.

Small Farm Size and Fragmentation

• The average size of land holding, in India, is shrinking under increasing population pressure.

• Thus, there are a large number of marginal and small farmers in the country, whose land holdings are often fragmented.

• The small size fragmented landholdings are uneconomic.

Degradation of Cultivable Land

• Faulty strategy of irrigation results in land degradation, since it may lead to depletion of soil fertility.

• In irrigated regions, a large tract of agricultural land has lost its fertility due to alkaliation and salinisation of soils and waterlogging.

• Excessive use of chemicals such as insecticides and pesticides has led to their concentration in toxic amounts in the soil profile.

Land resources, in India, does not have a unified supervising body and it is being used according to the market logic. This has led to several problems in sustainable management of land resources, key among them listed above.

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