Eco- friendly agriculture should be given a chance: Mir

2nd J&K Agriculture Science Congress Opens at SKUAST-J   

JAMMU: Minister for Agriculture, Mr. Ghulam Hassan Mir today said that Eco-Friendly Agriculture practices should be given chance and stressed for raising public awareness to facilitate extension of conservation techniques by involvement of all concerned stake holders including farmers, researchers and extension specialists. 

The Minister said this at the inaugural session of 2nd J&K Agriculture Science Congress after inaugurating the exhibition which was organized by Sher-i-Kashmir University and Agriculture Science and Technology (SKUAST) Jammu and sponsored by National Horticulture Board, Union Department of Science and technology and J&K state Council for Science and Technology held here this afternoon.

Vice –Chancellor SKUAST-J, Prof .D.K Arora, Joint Director Science& Technology, Dr. Mushtaq Ahmad Bhat, Director Extension SKUAST-J, Dr. Rasmi, Director Research SKUAST-J Mr Ajay Koal, founder Vice Chancellor SKUAST-J, Prof. H.U.Khan and delegates of different universities of across the country were present on the occasion. 

The Minister said over a period of time the value and productivity of traditional agriculture has been under estimated because of the wrong methodology used to compare it with the Green Revolution Model. He said studies should be carried to understand various types of farming methods, including eco-friendly traditional as well as modern methods.

Mr. Mir said that a large dose of commitment is needed by various aiding agencies to put their resources together so that greater scientific understanding of sustainable agriculture can be achieved. He said the policy makers are still chasing after new technological miracles to feed the world, whereas essential elements for both sustainability and productivity already exist and need to be rediscovered through the indigenous knowledge of farming communities and the diversity of the Nature’s resource.

The Minister said that our endeavour must also be to preserve soil composition, structure, natural bio-diversity and the sustainable food production by moving the crop production process closer to that of natural vegetation. He said the outputs from sustainable agriculture are devoid of inorganic chemicals such as pesticides and insecticides as it uses only the organic way of farming. He said it helps us to produce the products in more environment friendly manner and is thus healthier for the consumers to consume.

For strengthening the economic condition of our farmers, the Minister said that there is need to encourage the farmers to take up enterprises like Bee-keeping, Mushroom cultivation, Floriculture, Protected vegetable cultivation to augment the farm income. He said that present dispensation has also ensured that farmers get good price of their wheat and rice produced for which he said that government for the first time introduced procurement of these crops by Food Corporation of India which provided the farmers minimum support price for the produce and stopped distressed sale. 

The Minister said the Science Congress provides an opportunity to the scientists from different disciplines to come out with recommendations for drawing the road map for enhancing all round development of agriculture and wished the agriculture sector to grow for overall profitability and prosperity of the farming community. 

Minister for Revenue, Mr. Raman Bhalla who was Guest of Honour on the occasion, said that every effort should be made to transfer the technology from lab to land for ensuring quality agri- horticulture production. 

Lauding the role of research scientists for lunching farmer friendly programmes, the Minister hoped that this would certainly help to strength the socio-economic condition of the farmers. 

Referring the issues of SKUAST-J regarding the land for proposed KVKs the Minister assured University authorities that necessary steps would be taken to redressed these issues at the earliest.

Earlier, the Ministers inspected all the stalls made for exhibition by the different research wings of the SKUAST-J to exhibit research works in agriculture and its allied sectors.

The Ministers also released University Souvenir on the occasion.

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