Fri, Oct 28, 2016 | updated 07:28 PM IST

Agartala hosts special meeting on promotion of pulses cultivation in NER

Updated: Sep 21, 2016 11:48 IST

Agartala [India], Sept. 21 (ANI): A two-day special meeting on improvement and promotion of pulses cultivation in North-Eastern Region (NER) concluded here at the Pragya Bhavan yesterday.

Organised by ICAR in collaboration with the Tripura government's agriculture department, the meeting was inaugurated by Tripura Minster of Forest and Rural Development Naresh Jamatia, Dr S V Ngachan, Director, ICAR Research Complex for NER, Meghalaya and scientist and lecturers of various agriculture universities and colleges of the region.

Along with the discussion, a state-level farmers' meet on promotion of pulses and exhibition of various crops and technology was also held to encourage farmers.

Dr S V Ngachan said, "India including the Northeast has acute deficiency in pulse production; however, the Northeast region particularly has huge potential of promotion and production of various varieties of pulses. Only 5000 MT pulses are coming out of Tripura state, it is too less in comparison to the requirement which is very high."

He suggested that pulse crop has to be promoted in the NER for not only to fetch the demand but also to protecting the soil fertility and address other environmental issues and for which the various state and central government organizations have to work together.

"Our farmers should go for double the crop so that pulse can equally be grown for sustaining our agriculture - for the soil, for food and so many other environmental reasons. We are seriously thinking how further seed requirements can be meet, how production can be enhanced, what are the programs those can already be promote. State government's involvement also has to be there and all the state government of the Northeast has been invited so how we can convergent work together," said the director, ICAR Research Complex for NER.

He also suggested for resistant variety pulse seed and according to the soil and environmental condition of the region.

Low genetic yield of Indian pulses and their vulnerability to pests and diseases is a major hindrance to adoption of pulses by farmers. Being rain-fed, pulses often experience drought at critical growth stages. The risk of low productivity and income is too high for farmers to bear. The lack of drought- and disease-resistant varieties of pulse seeds is alarming.

The union government has taken a number of steps to boost the production of pulses, such as expanding the National Food Security Mission (NFSM) from 16 to 29 states including North-Eastern states, hilly states, Kerala and Goa. Under NFSM the pulses programme is being conducted in 638 districts of 29 states.

During 2016-17 under NFSM a sum of Rs 1100 crore has been earmarked as the central share for pulses programmes out of the entire allocation of Rs 1700 crore. (ANI)