‘J&K to formulate 5-year Action Plan for rapid growth of critical sectors’

SRINAGAR – A 5-year area and sector specific Action Plan will be formulated for the rapid growth of Agriculture, Dairy, Poultry, Vegetable, Pasture and Fodder Development, Animal and Sheep Husbandry, Fisheries and the other allied sectors possessing very high potential for generating employment and wealth in the State. For this purpose, a Committee comprising the Minister for Forests, Minister for Agriculture, Minister of State for Animal and Sheep Husbandry, Vice Chancellors of both the Farm Universities of the State and the Commissioner/Secretary, Agriculture Production has been set up to prepare the Action Plan in collaboration with all the concerned line departments.

Decision to this effect was taken at the 10th meeting of the University Council of the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Jammu, held at Raj Bhavan, here today under the chairmanship of Mr. N. N. Vohra, Governor, who is Chancellor of the University.

Addressing the meeting, the Governor, and Mr. Omar Abdullah, Chief Minister, who is Pro-Chancellor of the University, emphasized the need for adequate utilization of infrastructure, manpower and all other logistics and resources available with the Farm Universities for maximizing their outputs. They stressed the need for taking all required measures on urgent basis for enhancing production of dairy, poultry, mutton and fish. They also called for more close coordination among both the Farm Universities of the State and extension agencies of the Government for enhancing agri-productivity on sustainable basis.

Reviewing the intake capacity of the SKUAST-Jammu, the Governor said that every effort must be made to ensure that no seat in any discipline remains unfilled.

Regarding the status of infrastructure development works of the University, the Governor asked the Vice Chancellor to take up the matter with the concerned executing agencies for ensuring timely completion of all these works. He also emphasized for expediting all the required measures to facilitate construction of building for Maize Research Sub-Station at Sansoo, in Udhampur district in a time bound manner.

While reviewing the headway made towards establishing Krishi Vigyan Kendras in Samba, Udhampur and Ramban districts, the Governor asked the Vice Chancellor to pursue the matter with the concerned authorities for expediting possession of the land for the establishment of the KVKs, describing these as nerve centres for transfer of agricultural technologies to the farmers to progressively enhance agri-productivity and production in the State on a sustained basis.

The Chief Minister stressed that the progressive farmers with notable success stories need to be involved in a big way in enlarging awareness among the farmers who have been benefited with the various technological and scientific interventions made by the Agricultural Universities and the extension agencies of the Government which have culminated into these success stories so that other farmers could also benefit from their experiences. 

Regarding the revision of Statutes of the State Agricultural Universities, the Chief Minister asked both the Vice Chancellors to jointly revisit the Statutes and list out the amendments, wherever, required to be made.           

The Council approved the establishment of the School of Genomics, Molecular Biology and Microbiology at the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology, Jammu, on self-sustainable basis.     

Mian Altaf Ahmad, Minister for Forests, while putting forth several suggestions for the growth of agriculture and allied sectors in the State, urged for development of horticulture sector, particularly in Rajouri, Poonch, Mahore and Gool areas, which have high potential. He also called for making available quality maize seed to the farmers in these areas for increased production. 

Ghulam Hassan Mir, Minister for Agriculture, emphasized the need for utilizing the entire student intake capacity of the University to optimally benefit from the available infrastructure, manpower and resources. He stressed for maximum participation of farmers in the farmers awareness camps and extending the activities of KVKs in collaboration with the extension agencies of the Government for the larger benefit of the growers.  

Raman Bhalla, Minister for Horticulture, dwelt on the future growth of the University as the need is felt for urgently transforming agriculture and its allied sectors.    

Nazir Ahmad Khan (Gurezi), Minister of State for Animal and Sheep Husbandry, said that efforts need to be further intensified for increasing the production of dairy, mutton, poultry and fish in the State.

Dr. D. K. Arora, Vice Chancellor, SKUAST, Jammu, presented a detailed report on the status of teaching, research and extension activities undertaken by the varsity. He dwelt on the achievements of the University in varied fields and the new varieties of seeds of different crops which have been developed and released since the last meeting of the University Council. He also gave details of the various ongoing research projects and those in the pipeline.

The meeting was attended by Dr. Tej Partap, Vice Chancellor, SKUAST-Kashmir; Dr. A. R. Trag, Vice Chancellor, Islamic University of Science and Technology, Awantipore; Mr. B. R. Sharma, Principal Secretary, Planning and Development; Mr. B. B. Vyas, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister and Principal Secretary, Finance; Mr. Navin K. Choudhary, Principal Secretary to the Governor; Dr. Asgar Hassan Samoon, Commissioner/Secretary, Agriculture Production; Dr. Manjit Singh Kang; and Dr. B. B. Gupta, Registrar, SKUAST, Jammu.

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