The need for technology-driven development in the agricultural sector to help farmers across the country perform better and have easy access to information and know-how, was reiterated at an event to celebrate ICAR’s 93rd Foundation Day on July 16.
Farmers the backbone and lifeline of the economy, says Shobha Karandlaje, minister of state for agriculture and farmers’ welfare. Photo: Gaon Connection
The Indian Council of Agriculture Research (ICAR) celebrated its 93rd foundation day on July 16. ICAR was established on July 16 in 1929.
On the occasion, Narendra Singh Tomar, Union minister for agriculture and farmers’ welfare, announced awards in various categories and released publications of ICAR. Parshottam Rupala, Union minister for fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying, Kailash Choudhary, Union minister of state for agriculture and farmers’ welfare and Shobha Karandlaje, minister of state for agriculture and farmers’ welfare were present on the occasion.
The ICAR conferred 16 Awards in four major categories including the “National Award for outstanding contributions for Agricultural Institutes”, “National Award for outstanding contributions in Agricultural Researches”, “National Award for Application of Agricultural Technologies” and “National Award for Innovation and Technology Development by Farmers” during the occasion. The dignitaries virtually felicitated about 60 awardees in 16 different categories. The awardees included four ICAR institutes, one All India Coordinated Research Project, four Krishi Vigyan Kendras, 39 Scientists and 11 Farmers. Apart from the awards, the Hindi Rajbhasha Awards in the various categories were also given away.
The Union minister for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Tomar, along with Ashwini Vaishnav, Union minister of electronics & information technology, also launched ‘Kisan Sarathi’, a digital platform to facilitate farmers to get ‘right information at right time’ in their desired language.
Vaishnav said that Kisan Sarathi would enable farmers to interact and obtain advice on agriculture and allied areas from scientists at their respective Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVK).
On his part, Rupala, Union minister for fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying, while lauding the research and innovations of ICAR in the sector of agriculture, and for launching Kisan Sarathi, also urged ICAR to develop a digital platform for the animal husbandry and fisheries sector on the model of ‘Kisan Sarathi’. He hoped the Council would also develop a mechanism that helps fish farmers to know about the condition of fishing in particular ocean blocks.
Emphasising the need for a collective approach for developing technologies to solve problems and challenges of the farming community, Tomar applauded the ICAR’s initiatives to make the country an exporter of various food crops and ensuring nutritional security. He also outlined the active participation by more than 400 Krishi Vigyan Kendras in the “Bharat Ka Amrut Mahotsav” programme initiated by the Council to commemorate 75 Years of India’s Independence.
Tomar congratulated ICAR and its scientists for their tireless work in the field of agriculture.
He reiterated the central government’s aim of accelerating the progress of India’s agricultural sector and transforming it through the many farmer-friendly schemes. Tomar emphasised the need to grow the organic farming sector as well. He took the opportunity to assure farmers that the new farm bills that were being contested by farmers across many parts of the country would, in fact, revolutionise the agriculture sector and enhance their livelihoods.
Vaishnav called upon the ICAR scientists to take up research on new technological interventions in the area of transportation of farmer’s crops from their farm gate to warehouses, markets, etc., with minimum damage. The Union minister of electronics & information technology said his ministry and the ministry of communications were ready to provide all necessary support to the ministry of agriculture and farmers welfare and ministry of fisheries, animal husbandry and dairying for the empowerment of farmers. Vaishnav pointed out that the ministry of railways is devising ways to minimise the time taken for the transportation of crops.
Kailash Choudhary and Shobha Karandlaje also congratulated the ICAR and its scientists for enriching Indian agriculture sector through research and innovations. Choudhary commended the Krishi Vigyan Kendras for their role in disseminating the newer and advanced technologies to farmers in remote locations in the country. Karandlaje called the farmers the backbone and lifeline of the economy.
Trilochan Mohapatra, secretary, department of agricultural research and education and director general, ICAR, stressed on the Council’s commitment to provide higher education in the agricultural arena, carry out new research, identify the latest domestic varieties, initiate new technological advancements to narrow the gap of lab-to-land and to provide prompt solutions to various problems faced by the farmers.
Read the story in Hindi.