Wednesday, March 6, 2013



"The food grains, produced by the Punjab farmers, with the huge use of diesel, electricity, water, fertilizers, and pesticides are rotting in the godowns. We need to pay heed to the condition of the large stock of food grains and the farmers, and come up with a krishi niti (agriculture policy) for the farm development of the country." These views were expressed by the Chief Guest, Sh. Surjit Kumar Jayani, Hon'ble Minister of Forest and Labour, Punjab, during the inaugural session of the two-day workshop on "Role of Kissan Mela in Sustainable Supply of Wood for Industries" at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) today.

The workshop-cum-kissan mela has been jointly organized by Forest Research Institute (FRI), Dehradun; Punjab Agricultural University; Punjab Forest Department (PFD); Northern India Plywood Manufacturers Association; and Wood Technologists Association (WTA). Farmers, self-help groups, non-government organizations and agro-based industries from various parts of the Punjab state are participating in the workshop.

Sh Jayani stated that during past 65 years, farming community, in particular, and agriculture, in general, has not received the required attention of the political leaders. Recalling Swami Vivekananda's dream of "Bharat Desh Jagat Guru Ho Jayega," he called upon the farm experts to make agriculture a profitable venture. India has got the best land and agro-forestry can play a vital role in income enhancement, rural development and environment sustainability. He also inaugurated an exhibition which was put up by various institutions/organizations, and showcased plantation and wood-based technologies.

In his remarks, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon, Vice-Chancellor, PAU, said that the assured marketing for wheat-paddy cropping system and the excessive use of agro-chemicals has affected the natural resources like soil, water and environment. The Punjab Government is making best effort to promote the crop diversification in the state and agro-forestry is an essential part of it, he remarked. The initiative of Hon'ble Punjab Chief Minister, S. Prakash Singh Badal of launching "Greening Punjab" mission is highly praiseworthy, he said. The PAU and FRI can tie-up in terms of collaborative research for the progress of state, country and the farming community, he suggested.

Mr H.S. Gujral, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Punjab, emphasized the need for long-term investment in forestry, especially, agro-forestry. To increase the area under forest cover from 7% to 15% in the state is a big challenge, he added. Pointing out that the paddy cultivation has picked up in the eastern states, he divulged that about 10 lakh hectare area under paddy is to be brought under other crops in the state as a part of the diversification plan. For this, assured marketing, procurement and migration of the farmers to other crops is necessary. As PAU Kisan Melas are well-attended by the farmers in large number, the PFD and the University can enter into cooperation for disseminating technologies on agro-forestry, he expressed.

The Director of FRI, Dr P.P. Bhojvaid, while giving programme overview, said that the Punjab land is more under agriculture and that the agro-forestry can be of immense benefit to the farmers. The industry and the farmers must work together for the benefit of the country, he stressed, saying that the wood industry holds a great scope for the farmers. He also expressed concern over farm issues being confronted in the contemporary agriculture in the state.

The representatives of WTA and Punjab Plywood Manufacturers Association lauded PAU for its contribution to green revolution and called upon the farmers to plant poplar and eucalyptus of good quality.

Dr Krishan Kumar proposed the vote of thanks. On this occasion, the Chief Guest released a publication on agro-forestry and was honoured with a shawl and a memento. The other dignitaries were also honoured during the workshop.
News From:

No comments:

eXTReMe Tracker