Monday, April 29, 2013



Fruitful deliberations and discussions on seed bio-priming, priority areas of seed research, seed production enhancement, and different techniques for seed quality invigoration, were held during the three-day XXVIII Annual Group Meeting of All India Coordinated Research Project (AICRP-National Seed Project (NSP), jointly organized by the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) and the Directorate of Seed Research (DSR), Mau (U.P.), in the University campus. The seed scientists from different parts of the country including Assam, Andhra Pradesh, Bangalore, Gujarat, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu, and Uttar Pradesh attended the meet, which concluded here today. The meet was organized under the aegis of Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR).

In his inaugural remarks, Dr. B.S. Dhillon emphasised on making the seed production programme an attractive and a lucrative venture. Seed is an essential input of agriculture and it is a determinant factor for enhancing the crop productivity and the farmers' profitability, he said. Impressing upon the availability of best quality seed to the farmers at reasonable price and at appropriate time and place, he highlighted that the seeds of different crop varieties are a big attraction at PAU Kisan Melas, organized in the months of March and September every year.

Chairing the plenary session, Dr S.S. Gosal, Director of Research, PAU, said that the seed bio-priming, nanotechnology and nanotoxicity are the basic concerns and the new areas of research. There is a need to study their risk assessment, he emphasized, while laying stress on addressing the bio-safety issues as well. Saying that the useful recommendations emerging out of the meet will go a long way in helping the seed sector, he said, "We should also do the DNA profiling for protecting the germplasm."

The Co-Chairman of the session, Sh. Rajendra Prasad, Project Director, DSR, Mau (U.P.), appreciated the thoughts and ideas of the seed scientists and laid thrust on data analysis in seed technology research. "For the capacity building of the scientists, we are organizing a number of training programmes on various aspects of seeds such as application of molecular tools in seeds, characterization of seed-borne diseases, etc." he disclosed.

The Director (Seeds), Dr H.S. Randhawa shed light on the crescendos of the Indian seed industry during past three decades and its growth.

Earlier, in the technical session I, the progress made during 2012-13 in terms of seed production and certification; seed physiology, storage and testing; seed pathology; seed entomology; and seed processing was reviewed. The session was chaired by Dr K.S. Varaprasad, Project Director, Directorate of Oil Seed Research.

In his remarks, Dr R.K. Chowdhary, Research Advisory Committee (RAC) Member, DSR, Mau (U.P.) and Chairman of the session on "Inter-Project Linkage-Crop Improvement," said that the discussion on inter-project linkage, research advances in seed research, and issues pertaining to various crops, is essential for the formulation of need-based research programmes. The session saw presentations on various theme areas including genomics, pulses, paddy, wheat, groundnut, sunflower, castor, and post-harvest engineering and technology.

Dr N. Seetharama, RAC Member, DSR, Mau (U.P.), chaired the sessions on "Priority Issues in Seed Research," and "Seed Stakeholders- Scientists Interaction." Stating that the seeds and technology can play a significant role in enhancing the crop yield, he expressed that the public and private sectors together can create public awareness and support technological advances.

Sessions on review of breeder seed production and policy issues, and finalization of recommendations/technical programme formulation for the year 2013-14 were also held. Publications on seeds were released on this occasion.
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