7th March 2017, Umiam.
Considering the importance of pulses in human diet and for sustaining the soil health, Division of Crop Production, ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region, Umiam organized a field day on Pulses in rice fallow for food security and soil health on 7th March, 2017 to create the awareness about the benefits of pulses among the tribal farmers.
Farmers across 5 villages of Meghalaya participated in the programme. The programme was started with the interaction of Dr Anup Das, Head, Division of Crop Production with the tribal farmers. During interaction with farmers, he stated that pulses are the rich source of protein and can be easily grown under rice fallow conditions with no-trill based conservation agriculture. Pulses improve soil fertility by fixing atmospheric nitrogen and hence the farmers need to adopt the technology in the region. He further added that the double cropping in the rice fallow area is a prerequisite for doubling farmer’s income and to increase pulses area and production in the region. He also urged the farmers to utilize the resources available in the region and to adopt the scientific technology for sustainable pulses yield. Dr. Subhash Babu, Scientist, Division of Crop Production talked about economic benefits of pulses cultivation in rice/maize fallow. He also described the production technology of lentil and pea in no-till rice fallow and French bean and black gram in maize fallows for better understanding among the tribal farmers.
Dr Krishnappa R, Scientist, Crop Production Division, highlighted the importance of varietal selection, time of sowing and fertility management for successful cultivation of pules in rice/maize fallow. As soils of the region are acidic in nature, application of lime before sowing of crops and foliar application of DAP and urea is highly recommended for achieving the higher pulses yield, he added. In addition to that Dr M. Thoithoi Devi, Scientist, Crop Production Division, stressed that the role of woman in agriculture and allied sectors is of paramount importance for enhancing the family income. She also urged the farmers to come forward to adopt the latest pules production technology for societal and environmental benefits.
Leaflets on ‘No-till Lentil Production in Rice Fallow for North Eastern Hill Region’ in English and Khasi language, were distributed among the tribal farmers. For demonstration on No-till cultivation of pulses in lowland rice fallow, field visit as well as practical demonstration was done under supervision of a group of scientists. The farmers interacted with the experts and updated about improved pulses production technologies, especially in rice/maize fallow areas. The programme was concluded with promise of every possible support from ICAR to promote the pulse cultivation in NEH region.