19th February 2013, New Delhi
Shri Sharad Pawar, Union Minister of Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, Government of India inaugurated the Conference of Heads of Agricultural Universities and Research Institution of ASEAN Countries and Vice-Chancellors of Agricultural and Central Universities of India at NASC Complex, New Delhi here today.
While addressing the conference he said, “With enormous wealth of natural resources, infrastructure and expertise available in the region, cooperation in agriculture and forestry sectors between India and ASEAN States can play important role in the development process of the region.”
Shri Pawar also highlighted the benefits of cooperation between India and ASEAN countries and said, “Most of our countries have diverse agro-climatic conditions which facilitate production of variety of crops, fruits and vegetables, livestock, poultry, apiary, fishery etc. round the year. The farmers can get benefited through technological interventions, higher productivity, value addition and efficient marketing. The consumers are also likely to get benefited through round the year availability of quality material at reasonable price.”
Shri Tariq Anwar, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, Government of India emphasized on development of joint ventures in agriculture between India and ASEAN States. He also informed the gathering about the major achievement of India in the agricultural production.
Dr. Charan Das Mahant, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, Government of India appreciated the collaboration between ASEAN nations and India to strengthen the relation for betterment of the people and hoped that deliberations of the conference will help the farmers in the region.
Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and Director General, ICAR thanked the ASEAN nation to exchange of ideas for the development of agricultural education in the region. He also highlighted the issues of concern in the agriculture like climate change, soil fertility, water conservation, etc.
During the conference, on behalf of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute's Water Technology Centre and the University of Nebraska's Robert B. Daugherty, Water for Food Institute, Dr. S. Ayyappan (DG, ICAR) and Dr. J. B. Milliken (President, University of Nebraska, USA) signed a MoU for Developing an advanced agricultural drought monitoring and early warning system; Developing abiotic (viz. drought/ temperature/ salinity) stress tolerant wheat, maize and soybean genotypes using molecular approaches and exploring phenomics/ functional genomics of abiotic stress tolerance in rice; and Maximizing agricultural productivity and food security through energy efficient/ water conserving sensor operated precision- fertigation systems for crops and cropping systems of drought prone areas.
Govind Ballabh Pant University of Agriculture & Technology, Pantnagar University of Agricultural Sciences, Bengaluru and Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Kashmir, Srinagar were awarded for excellent performance on the occasion.
Shri Arvind Kaushal, Additional Secretary, DARE and Secretary, ICAR; Dr. Arvind Kumar, DDG (Education); Dr. S. N. Puri, Vice-Chancellor of Central Agricultural University, Imphal & President Association of Indian Universities &; Dr. V. K. Taneja, Vice Chancellor of GADVASU, Ludhiana & President, IAUA also presented their valuable remarks on the occasion.
Representatives from ASEAN nations, Vice-Chancellors of Agricultural Universities of India and senior officials of ICAR participated in the conference.
Shri Arvind Kaushal, Additional Secretary, DARE and Secretary, ICAR proposed the vote of thanks.
(Source: NAIP Mass Media Project, DKMA, ICAR)