Gangtok, Feb 13: (IPR) A daylong Awareness cum Training Programme followed by field inspection was held with the theme of Adaption and Mitigation through Soil, Water, Nutrient Management and Agro-Forestry (Soil Carbon Sequestration/Conservation Agriculture) Under NICRA Project at Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), Gangtok, today. The programme was organised by the ICAR- National Organic Farming Research Institute, Gangtok.
Hon’ble Minister Agriculture, Horticulture and Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Services Shri Lok Nath Sharma graced the inaugural ceremony as the Chief Guest. The programme was also attended by the Secretary Agriculture Shri Rinzing C Bhutia, Secretary Horticulture Shri MT Sherpa, officials, Agriculture Scientists and farmers from different parts the of state.
Addressing the farmers, Minister Sharma drew lights on the existing scenario of agriculture in the state and encouraged farmers to adopt agricultural practices with a new spirit to witness a paradigm shift in the next five years. The state government, under the leadership of the Hon’ble Chief Minister Shri P.S.Tamang, is fully committed to improve the socio-economic status of farmers and to make them self reliant and agro-entrepreneurs, he added.
He urged farmers to remain informed about the existing programmes of the state government for its proper implementations in the field.
Minister applauded the activities carried out by ICAR and urged to adopt two GPU and to form a cluster in each district and to apply newly introduced technology to set an example for the encouragement of the farmers.
He also expressed concern over public grievances of wildlife interference and stressed upon the need to sort out a mechanism to curb this genuine issue.
He also asked departmental officials to be more responsible and accountable to provide available services in the coordination of farmers and also urged farmers to be more determined to practice agriculture, comprehensively as guided by the technical experts of the department.
Further, he articulated at length on the future scope of farmers for sustainable growth.
Minister Sharma also urged scientists and all concerned to revive production of various crops and fruits like Orange, Ginger, Cardamom etc. Further, he advised farmers to imbibe enlightening technical session to mitigate and overcome its effects.
Secretary, Agriculture Shri Rinzing C Bhutia enlightened farmers on Pradhan Mantri Krishi Samman Nidhi and urged them to register their name in consultation of concerned VLW to receive financial benefits of Rupees Six Thousand in three instalments, annually. He also outlined the benefits of PM Krishi Sichai Yojana and motivated farmers to cooperate for the implementation of the scheme and active functioning of FPOs for their benefits.
Secretary Horticulture Shri MT Sherpa recalled the role of agriculture in earning a livelihood in the past decades and added that the agriculture sector is getting transformed into entrepreneurship to make it a more lucrative profession. He also underlined programmes under Horticulture Mission to promote cluster farming, Community approach, human resource development etc. Shri Sherpa also informed that the new subjects of Horticulture will be introduced in the school curriculum to generate interest amongst the young generation towards Agriculture and Horticulture.
Director Horticulture Shri Padam Subba also addressed the farmers and encouraged them for the conservation of water through the construction of Water Harvesting Tank. He also urged them to share acquired information in their respective societies.
Joint Director ICAR- NOFRI Dr RK. Awasthe proposed welcome address and also drew lights on overview of ICAR and its functioning throughout the nation. Dr Awasthe also emphasised on activities accomplished by the institute and mentioned that the transfer of technology as the main component wherein regular monitoring, reporting assessment is being carried out by the institute, properly. He also threw lights on the importance of crop rotation for enhancement of the production.
During the programme, Minister Sharma handed overcrop seeds to the farmers and also launched IEC folders published in the local language.
The Awareness programme was followed by the inspection visit at the farm developed by ICAR. Minister along with the farmers visited Goat Research Farm, Poultry Seed Project, Citrus Rootstock block, Mushroom Spawn cum Production Unit, Dairy, piggery and the cultivated area. During the visit Minister also inaugurated a newly established Pig farm.