2nd October 2013, Sundarban
Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) organized a consultation workshop on ‘Development of Action Plan for Livelihood Options at Bali Island of Sundarban’ on the occasion of Gandhi Jayanti (2nd October) with an objective of developing strategy for intervention of ICAR in the development of remote and underdeveloped islands of Sundarban.
Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and Director General, ICAR presided over the programme. While addressing the ICAR officials, Dr. Ayyappan hoped that Bali would become a model for other backward and under developed regions for their development. He also appreciated Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture (CIFA) for initiating development programme through its Tribal Sub Plan (TSP) scheme.
Shri Arvind Kaushal, Additional Secretary, DARE and Secretary, ICAR urged scientists to draw inspiration from Mahatma Gandhi and Swami Vivekananda to uplift the under privileged community through concerted efforts. The DDGs and Directors of various institutes also expressed their opinion and offered unstinted support for developmental activities in the region. Scientists and officials also discussed and deliberated a wide range of strategies and action plans on the occasion. Officials from West Bengal Fisheries Department, members of Wildlife Protection Society of India (WPSI), various other senior officials, KVK, NGOs and the villagers were present on the occasion. Dr. Bhargava, ICAR GB member and Swami Sibapurnananda (Prakash) Maharaj of Ramkrishna Mission, Belur Math were also present.
Earlier, Dr. P. Jayasankar, Director, CIFA welcomed the dignitaries and thanked Dr. Ayyappan for making this event possible. He also hoped that this ICAR endeavour would provide relief to the poverty stricken villagers of Bali.
Dr. S. Ayyappan and other delegates also visited the village, where CIFA technologies were implemented by beneficiaries. During the visit, delegates interacted with village community on livelihood options related to agriculture, livestock and fisheries. Dr. Ayyappan reviewed the action plan for improvement of livelihood of Bali Island and utilization of TSP fund in the respective institutes for livelihood promotions in the tribal areas in India during the 12th Plan.
The consultation meeting recommended four important action points for the development of Bali:
- Integrated farming
- Screening of diseases before introduction of new livestock
- Development of marketing system
- Input and output management in the island
Bali, a small Island within Sundarban inhabited by tribal populations, was ravaged by the strong cyclonic storm ‘Aila’ in 2009, causing heavy damage to the livestock and biodiversity resulting in severe food crisis. With a view to offering a helping hand to tribal people of Bali, CIFA has initiated livelihood up-gradation programme under Tribal Sub-Plan (TSP).
Shri Anil Mistry from WPSI, Dr. P.P. Chakrabarty, Dr. B.C. Mahapatra, Dr. Kuldeep Kumar, Dr. N.K. Barik, Dr. Rajesh Kumar and Dr. Ferosekhan from CIFA were among the chief organizing personnel of this consultation workshop.
(Source: CIFA, Bhubaneswar)