In this article we will discuss about:- 1. Procedure of Agro-Climatic Planning 2. Advantages of Agro-Climatic Planning 3. Limitations 4. Suggestions for Improving Performance in India.

Procedure of Agro-Climatic Planning:

Agro-climatic regional planning has to be carried out following a specific procedure involving certain steps as described below:

1. Studying the existing plan.

2. Identification of constraints in the existing plan.


3. Working out the resource availability in each area.

4. Combining the areas with similar agro-climatic conditions.

5. Preparing an action plan for the homogeneous area.

6. Implementation of proposed plan.


The existing plan of the area in terms of land use, water availability, input use, employment pattern, market infrastructure and economic and social set-up need to be studied. This can provide a guideline for the improved plan. The existing plan is naturally based on available resources of the people and their experience over a longer period of time.

The next question is to identify the weaknesses in the existing plan and thus constraints for non-adoption of modern inputs and practices can be spell out. For example, the use of lower doses of fertilizers may be due to ignorance of people and lack of finance. Thus for every crop and even overall socio-economic constraints can be identified.

The potentials of the area have also to be identified keeping in view the physical resource endowments in each area. Even the human resources in terms of level of literacy, experience, technical skill etc. should also be listed so that the existing plan can be improved by exploiting the available resources.

Preferably all the contiguous areas having similar resources, crop patterns and constraints irrespective to the administrative set-up should be merged together. This is essential to prepare separate action plans for each homogeneous areas.


Therefore, the resource availability and constraints of every specific zone may be considered and an action plan be prepared so that the local resources can be potentially exploited, higher return giving enterprises are raised, better marketing system of the input and output is evolved, higher employment opportunity are created and overall economic development of the area is brought out. The new plan is to be tested in tends of its feasibility and acceptability among the local people otherwise the plan would remain on papers.

All possible efforts should be made to put the plan into action. The necessary arrangements for additional resources, institutional set-up and human resource development is to be practically arranged so that the plan is given the practical shape. The plan has to be evaluated from time to time in terms of its results.

Advantages of Agro-Climatic Planning:

1. The major strategic decision on the basis of agro-climatic planning is to prepare land use and cropping pattern. Even the non-crop based development possibilities like dairy, poultry etc. can be exploited for increasing employment and income of the people.

2. While doing this kind of planning, new investment and policy strategies emerge for the country as a whole. Features like watershed development, soil conservation, and groundwater development can be intimated. Both public and private investment possibilities for land and water development can be phased out.

3. It overcomes the problem of over-generalization and lack of focus on problems and prospects that are specific to agro-climatic, demographic, economic, sociological and ecological conditions.

4. The decentralization makes policy formulation and implementation much simpler as the regions are more or less homogeneous.

5. More balanced growth can be attained by proper utilization of local resources involving local people.

6. To detail the institutional, marketing, agro-processing and infrastructure support required for more promising patterns of development, agro-climate planning is of utmost importance.

Limitations of Agro-Climatic Planning:

In-spite of the fact that proper identification of need based planning can be done by this process but there are a number of limitations of zonal planning as well.


The major problems are:

1. Administrative Problem:

The agro-climatic zone may cover parts of more than one state. This involves the coverage by all the concerned administrations. If one of the states does not cope up with the plan, the entire effort may be useless. For example, a joint water dam project may not get the final shape unless all the concerned areas participate effectively.


2. Too Small Area:

A zone may have such a small area that it may not catch the attention of planners and Govt. Ultimately, such zones- remain neglected by the planners.

3. Identification of Zones:


It may not be possible to exactly identify the agro-climatic homogeneous zone especially the border line area between two contiguous zones.

4. Resource Allocation:

The problem of the quantum of resources to be allocated to each zone becomes another problem. Inter zonal rivalries may also get sharpened as a consequence.

Suggestions for Improving Performance of Agro-Climatic Planning in India:

In India, economists, social scientist and political thinkers consider the decentralized planning as the sole machinery for the solution of country’s serious economic problem like poor growth rate, poverty, inequality, unemployment, imbalanced growth and reginal inequalities etc. During the last fifty years of centralised planning, the country has failed to tackle all these economic problems in a suitable manner.

Thus, in order to tackle these problems effectively, the planning process in India should be decentralised at the gross root or local level. Although the Seventh Plan has introduced the decentralised planning process in a serious manner but the Eighth Plan (1992-97) has given special emphasis on the decentralised planning process for local area planning.


The following are some of the important suggestions which are to be adopted for the improvement of performance of regional planning in India:

1. Panchayati Raj Institutions of the country should the strengthened for the effective implementation of regional planning.

2. Proper organisations of marginal and small farmers, landless agricultural labourers artisans scheduled castes and scheduled tribe community and other backward classes should be developed for their proper representation in local bodies.

3. Land reforms and other institutional reforms must be introduced for the successful implementation of decentralised planning in India.

4. For removing regional disparities in respect of economic development, decentralised planning should be adopted simultaneously among all the states of the country. In view to have a proper shift from centralised planning process to decentralised planning process, the country should adopt a uniform policy throughout the country.


5. State governments should make necessary arrangement for devaluation of funds in adequate quantity for Panchayati Raj Institution along with mobilisation of local private capital.

6. In order to have successful implementation of regional planning at the district level, district planning bodies should be formed taking various experts from different discipline like economics, agriculture, statistics, banking, sociology, animal husbandry etc.

7. In order to have successful implementation of regional planning, modalities of its implementation have to be sorted out systematically. Role of such agencies needs to be clearly defined. Besides, government administrative machinery, elected people’s representatives and banks should co-operate effectively for proper implementation of regional planning in India. Thus, regional or decentralisation of the planning process throughout the country is the need of the hour if the country wishes to yield the better results of economic planning.