A Pre-Kharif Interface
between Department of Agriculture, Corporation & Farmers Welfare and
ICAR (Indian Council of Agricultural Research) was held last week in
Delhi, chaired by the Secretary (AC&FW) and co-chaired by the Secretary
(DARE). It was attended by senior officials from the Departments of
Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers Welfare; Animal Husbandry, Dairying
and Fisheries; and ICAR/Agricultural Research and Education.
The objective of Interface is to jointly identify emerging researchable
areas and evolve strategies for better implementation of the schemes and
programmes of the Ministry during the coming crop season. The Ministry
has a well established institutional mechanism for identifying critical
and contemporary issues for research and technology/farm management
practices. It begins with a Zonal Conference on agricultural inputs in
the month of January, wherein the Divisional Heads of Department of
Agriculture, Cooperation & Farmers Welfare/Department of Animal
Husbandry, Dairying & Fisheries supported by their counterpart from ICAR
hold meetings with State representatives and identify critical issues.
These are deliberated further at the Ministry level and brought up
before the Interface chaired by Secretary, DAC&FW. The issues
deliberated upon and recommendations made during the Pre-Kharif
Interface would be further shared with the State representatives during
the forthcoming National Conference for Kharif Campaign 2017, scheduled
on April 25-26, 2017. Simultaneously, all researchable issues will be
shared with ICAR for appropriate research based solutions.
During the Interface, joint/common issues relating to Crops, Seeds,
Plant Protection, Horticulture, Farm Mechanization & Technology, Natural
Resource Management, Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, Integrated Nutrient
Management, Extension and DAHD&F were deliberated upon. A few important
decisions taken include:
· Crop varieties released by ICAR after 2011 should be promoted
throughout India. The purpose is to achieve higher rate of varietal
· It was decided to request all the State governments to put seed
indents for all the recommended varieties of various crops for their
respective State, released after 2011.
· It was also agreed to have DNA fingerprint of all the released
varieties for ascertaining their varietal identity and genetic purity.
· The Secretary, DAC&FW directed to identify different sources of supply
of Gypsum, so that it is made available for enhancing the productivity
of Oilseeds and Pulses, besides treating all problem soils.
· The Secretary, DARE stressed on developing transgenic groundnut,
sunflower and castor varieties resistant to peanut bud/ stem necrosis
disease, Alternaria and Botrytis diseases, as the search for resistance
sources in the germplasm has not given the desired result so far.
· Among many issues discussed today, the issue of application of drip
irrigation technology in sugarcane cultivation throughout the country
was stressed by the Secretary, DAC&FW, who referred to the law made by
the Government of Maharashtra in this regard.
· It was also jointly decided that the consolidated laboratory for
honey-testing will be established at IARI, New Delhi to promote the
enterprise and take advantage of its positive impact on crop
· Both the Secretaries agreed to work for addressing the problems of the
farming community by providing appropriate technology through proper
The close coordination and cooperation amongst the three Departments of
the Ministry was recognised by all participating members and it was
agreed, that the same spirit shall be brought to bear upon the working
to ensure food and nutrition security of the country in particular and
growth of agriculture sector at large. The Chairman also highlighted the
need to work jointly for realising the vision of the Hon’ble Prime
Minister of doubling the farmers’ income by 2022.