Review Workshop on Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture (ARYA)

17th January 2017, New Delhi

Dr Trilochan Mohapatra , Secretary (DARE) & Director General (ICAR), inaugurated review Workshop on Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture (ARYA) Project (17-18 January, 2017) at NASC Complex, Pusa today.

Review Workshop on Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture (ARYA) Review Workshop on Attracting and Retaining Youth in Agriculture (ARYA)

Dr Mohapatra, his inaugural address emphasised that youth, skilling and start-up are integral part of ARYA project. Apart from training youth, profitable agriculture is crucial for attracting and retaining youth in agriculture, he added. He said youth should be linked with various public and private institutions including financial institutions. He spoke of soil testing scheme which government is implementing. In this context he emphasised that youth can be motivated to be entrepreneur to provide relevant information on soil health and provide data, results at door steps of farmers. The modern youth can be reached through mobile and provided with soil health parameters including nutrients and microbes and entrepreneurial youth can function as soil health doctor.

He was of the view that many local products do not find place in proper market environment and therefore efforts are to be made for production, processing, value addition and effective marketing. Analysis of local needs and planning agri- prunerial activities accordingly is important. Shifting from production to processing and linkage with other organisations across various value chain is important. Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR underscored the importance of KVKs to perform routine mandatory roles apart from implementations of projects like ARYA, Skill India and Oilseeds and Pulses demonstrations programs. He said that KVKs are getting more responsibilities and more roles to play with expanding demands from other ministries like Department of Science, Dept. of Meteorology. In this context, it is suggested that KVKs have to utilize the opportunities and spring board to success. Perfect planning is essential for KVKs to play greater role in a bigger scale and in this context there is relevancy for ARYA to get expanded.

Shri. Sunil Kumar Singh, Additional Secretary & Financial Advisor (DARE/ICAR) said there is a need to generate entrepreneurship models that would help to retain youth in rural areas. He said formation of self-help groups in ARYA project will ensure the effectiveness of the project.

Dr. A.K.Singh, Deputy Director General (Agricultural Extension) in his welcome address, said the focus of the ARYA project is on Entrepreneurial activities, income generation and building capacity of youth groups to manage their agri-based enterprises. For the project, various enterprises have been identified, linkages with state governments, technical institutions to deal with technologies and to build innovative processes. He suggested that the incubation centres at IARI and other institutions can be linked with the project. He suggested that over a period of implementation of project, large number of partners will be involved and entrepreneurship models will be established at district level. About 100 KVKs providing skill training may be involved with ARYA project. It is emphasized to go beyond Agriculture production and accordingly need based interventions are to be planned. Dr Singh also briefed about the achievements of ARYA project made by KVK Nimpith and KVK, Kannur.

(Source: Agricultural Extension Division, ICAR)