PAU is a torch bearer for Punjab farmers, who make Punjab progress and prosper: S. Langah

Ludhiana, August 31, 2010

Punjab Agricultural University is a treasure house of field worthy recommendations for farmers. This was stated by S. Sucha Singh Langah, Agriculture Minister, Punjab while addressing a gathering of PAU scientists working at out stations. S. Langah said that due to scientific intricacies, the contemporary farming has become greatly knowledge-intensive. The Minister said that there are a variety of economic and ecological constraints in Punjab Agriculture including declining profitability, increasing production cost, pollution and retention of toxic residue in crop produce, etc. He appreciated the farm scientists in understanding and solving these constraints and pin pointed that the relevant knowledge must reach out effectively to farmers. S.Langah said that agricultural research and technology generation must be viewed from holistic angle and that the effect of inputs used on health of humans, cattle and soil should be monitored. Only those technologies should be recommended which are cost effective, environmentally benign, user-friendly and viable

S. Sucha Singh Langah, Agriculture Minister of Punjab delivering his remarks during interaction with PAU scientists

The Minister said that the entire country looks upon Punjab as far as the matter of food security is concerned. He lauded the diligence and inquisitiveness of Punjabi farmers and said that their contribution on the food front at the national level was tremendous. PAU is a torch bearer for farmers of Punjab who in turn make Punjab progress and prosper. S. Langah said that farmers should follow the advice of experts to enrich soil through using green manures. He said that the efforts made to delay transplanting of paddy has been effective in stemming the pace of water table decline that in turn saved electricity and fuel worth thousands of crores of Rupees. If the issue is of emergent nature, he suggested the scientists to approach him directly so that the same is addressed at the government level. S. Langah said that the current crop seemed to yield bumper harvest and wished farmers and scientists very well in their endeavors. He suggested that such interactive meetings should be held at regular intervals as it provides opportunities to learn about the ongoing research and technology transfer programmes.

The PAU Vice-Chancellor, Dr. Manjit Singh Kang, while welcoming the honourable Minister said that PAU is dedicatedly working for Punjab farmers and that the scientists reorient their programmes to make these as per the technological needs of farmers. He shared that the university, during the last three years has released 65 new verities of different crops alongwith 51 production and 58 protection technologies which have been well received by farmers. He said that the focus of scientists is on developing cost-effective and eco-friendly technologies that help conserve the natural resource base. He thanked the Minister for his ever available support and suggestions for formulating and implementing programmes. He said that S. Langah played an immensely positive role in solving the pension issue that the university was facing in the recent past.

The member of PAU Board of Management and a former PAU Agronomist, Dr. B.S. Boparai appreciated the programmes steered by PAU and complemented its role in green revolution. He said that the establishment of Borlaug Institute of South Asia, near Ludhiana will be a landmark in agricultural development as the work done on wheat and maize will not only benefit India but South East Asian region as a whole. Dr. Boparai said that need based technologies developed by PAU help address the problems effectively. He appreciated PAU for suggesting contingency plan in the wake of developing flood like situation due to incessant rains received in some places in the state and publicizing the same as flash messages through electronic and print media. He suggested that the high value crops with excellent market potential should be given enhanced focus. Discussing about cropping pattern in Punjab agriculture, Dr. Boparai said that pulses and sugarcane should be given due importance. He said that PAU has deviced water saving technologies such as short duration crops, bed/trench planting, crop diversification, etc. but more needs to be done in this direction. He said Bt cotton has enhanced the prospects of the crop in recent past and added that transgenics hold great potential in several crops. Dr. Boparai appreciated the way the scientists projected mandates, achievements, constraints and future thrust of different out stations of PAU. He expressed thanks to S.Langah for his interest in PAU activities.

The scientists from different out stations of PAU namely, Dr.J.S. Josan of Regional Station, Abohar, Dr. R.K. Gumber of Regional Station, Faridkot, Dr. P.S. Bagga of Regional Station, Gurdaspur, Dr. S.C. Sharma of Regional Station for Kandi Area, Ballowal Saunkhri, Dr. Navtej Singh of Fruit Research Station, Gangian, Dr. Rajbir Singh Boora of Fruit Research Station, Bahadurgarh presented the progress of technology generation and dissemination during the last three years. Dr. S.S. Bal, Director (Seeds) discussed the seed production programmes undertaken by PAU at Ladhowal, Kapurthala, Nabha, Naraingarh, Faridkot during the last three years.

Earlier, the Director of Research, Dr. S.S. Gosal welcomed S. Langah, Dr. Kang, Deans and Directors and other officers, scientists from outstations and Heads of various departments and highlighted the role played by PAU in developing technologies and their transfer to farmers.

The Director of Extension Education, Dr. M.S. Gill proposed his vote of thanks to all participants

Source: PAU, Ludhiana