Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu on Sunday called for Central and state governments' intervention through policy decisions for structural changes in agriculture and called upon the youth to pay "renewed attention" to this sector.
"There is a need to reorient the agriculture sector in a fundamental way to make it sustainable and remunerative. Structural changes in agriculture are needed through policy interventions of the Centre and various state governments," Naidu said on the occasion of Sankranthi and the second-anniversary celebrations of Swarna Bharati Trust.
He said that the youth should pay renewed attention to agriculture as it is the backbone of Indian economy and that the need of the hour is to accord greater prominence to "natural farming and reduce the use of chemical fertilisers".
The Vice President emphasised on creating a cultural renaissance in the country by propagating and practising India's time-tested traditions and customs, saying: "The time has come for all Indians to adopt changes in their lifestyles and return to the old traditional methods of healthy living. We need to follow the customs and practices of our forefathers and abandon the West-oriented lifestyles."
Naidu said the traditional food habits, flavours and customs are not only time-tested but healthy too as they are tailor-made to suit the requirements of each season and region.
"We need to create awareness and educate the youth for adopting healthy dietary habits and lifestyles by returning to our simple but effective ways of living. Similarly, the ancient Indian art of Yoga creates a fusion of a healthy mind and a healthy body."
Referring to the importance of mother tongue and native languages, the Vice President said everyone should "strive to protect, promote and propagate mother tongue".
Observing that the traditional family system is the pride of India, he said there is a need to protect the family values.
"Our traditions and customs not only strengthen the social fabric but also create bonding among different sections."
He said that Indians have always believed in the philosophy of sharing, caring and worshipping nature. "On this Sankranthi festival, let us all rededicate ourselves to the cause of building a healthy, strong, prosperous and inclusive India," he added.