Dynamics of Land Use and Trends of Agriculture in Sikkim

By Anjuli Gurung and Abdul Hannan

Sikkim is a Himalayan state, where more than 64% of its populace still depends on agriculture and its allied sectors. As land plays an important role in agriculture, it is vital to comprehend how the land use change makes an impact on the growth of agriculture in Sikkim. State experienced different farming practices over the period of time. Before the merger with Indian union in 1975, there was a traditional farming practice in Sikkim. But with the merger, state got influenced by ‘Green Revolution’ which introduced chemical based farming (conventional farming). However, during the year 2003 state government took an initiative to convert all the cultivable land into organically cultivable land and became fully organic state in 2016. With the changing pattern of agriculture, land use pattern also get influence. The study found that the net sown area has decreased in all the districts except the east district during 2010-11 from the year 2005-06. Net sown area has decreased, however, there is an increase in the area of current fallow and culturable waste land. The forest area has also increased in Sikkim during 2010-11. The number of operational holdings of all the classes has decreased except the large class. The operated area of all the class has decreased except the medium class. The number and area of irrigation holdings has decreased in north and east district, however, there is an increase in the irrigation status in south and west district. The cropping intensity has also increased in 2010-11 from 2005-06 in Sikkim. The secondary source of data has been used for the study.

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