11th April, 2016, New Delhi
Shri Radha Mohan Singh, Union Agriculture and Farmers Welfare Minister, inaugurated National Conference on Agriculture - Kharif Campaign-2016 here today.
In his inaugural address, Union Agriculture Minister said currently 10 states are facing drought conditions but district contingency plans are proving helpful to farmers for sustaining their livelihood and also for conservation and effective utilization of scanty water resources. He also appreciated farmers, scientists, extension workers, officials and other stakeholders of the respective states for effectively tackling the drought situation. He emphasized on the various allied sectors of the agriculture which should be given due importance for securing livelihood of farmers during natural calamities. In this context, recently launched Pradhan Mantri Fasal Bima Yojana will be a boon to farmers, he added. Shri Singh elaborated on various farmer friendly provisions of this scheme and also dwelled upon other schemes such as Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchai Yojana, Soil Health Card Scheme and the successful production and distribution of Neem coated Urea.
Union Agriculture Minister announced that a pan-India trading portal, National Agriculture Market (eNAM) will be launched on 14 April, 2016 for ensuring better returns to farmers. Farmer can showcase their produce on-line from their nearest market and traders can quote price from anywhere. On the launch day the portal will cover 23 commodities and 21 markets across eight states and 585 markets will be linked by March 2018, he added. He hoped that this National Conference will deliberate on various issues concerning Kharif crops and will come up with strong recommendations to boost productivity and profitability during this season.
Dr. Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, in his address stressed on the need of construction and rejuvenation of ponds in villages, especially in drought hit states and said government is attaching priority to this important activity by allocation of funds for the purpose. He also emphasized on development of dairying in the drought prone districts for ensuring livelihood and income of farmers during such calamities.
Shri S.K. Pattanayak, Secretary (DAC&FW), highlighted the important role of Kharif crops in food security and briefed on various recent initiatives to boost the productivity of these crops.
Shri A.K. Angurana, Secretary (DAHD&F), emphasized on the importance of livestock in sustaining livelihood security to farmers.
Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR in his remarks elaborated on various activities being undertaken by ICAR and its institutes including KVKs under Kharif Campaign.
The two-day (11-12 April, 2016) National Conference is being organized by Department of Agriculture Cooperation and Farmers Welfare with the objective to develop a strategy to improve productivity and production of Kharif crops.
Senior officials and scientists of state agriculture, horticulture and animal husbandry departments, DARE/ICAR and other line departments are participating in the event.
(Source: ICAR-DKMA, New Delhi)