VP Naidu urges scientists to focus on likely problems farmers might face due to global warming

Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu visited ICAR- National Research Center on Mithun in Dimapur, Nagaland today and called upon the scientists to come out with innovative research to protect and conserve the rich bio-resources and livestock of the North Eastern Region.

Noting that North Eastern India is an important biodiversity hotspot, Naidu said “Our scientific institutions should work for development of location specific technologies which are sustainable, climate resilient and culturally in sync with the tribal cultures of the region.”

Interacting with the scientists and researchers of ICAR-National Research Centre on Mithun and ICAR Research Complex for NEH Region during the visit, he urged the scientists to work towards modernising agriculture with the adoption of latest technologies for the progress and prosperity of the North-Eastern States.

On this occasion, the Vice President was shown a promotional video for Mithun farmers on semi-intensive Mithun farming. He lauded the National Research Centre for Mithun for coming out with this alternative system of rearing of Mithun under semi-intensive systems and said the Center has done excellent work in protection and preservation of the majestic animal.

During the visit to Mithun Center, Naidu also visited Central Instrumentation Facility (CIF) Laboratory where diseases and diagnostics relating to this unique animal were explained to him.

Noting that the Research Centre has done full genome sequencing of Mithun to understand its evolutionary history across the distinct geographical locations, Naidu said “Equally praiseworthy are your efforts in providing healthcare services to Mithun farms in the area and development of a Mithun mitra mobile app for the farmers.

Stating that the state animal holds immense significance economically, socially and emotionally for the people of Nagaland, the Vice President suggested that educated youth should be attracted towards the conservation of the animal.

Commending the ICAR Research Complex for North East Hill (NEH) Region for several notable achievements, including the development of 56 crop varieties, Naidu said the Institute’s emphasis on promoting integrated farming systems comprising crop, livestock, poultry, fishery, and horticulture is praiseworthy.

“I am pleased to know that 50% of the poultry breeds reared in the state are of Vanaraja and Srinidhi, which are produced from this centre and cater to the needs of farmers in every nook and corner,” he added.

Observing that dairying is an important ancillary activity in India that accounts for approximately one-third of rural household incomes, he said that every effort must be made to promote dairying by adopting the latest technological advances in the field. “I am happy that the ICAR Research Complex for NE region is working to improve animal health coverage and livestock production systems,” he added.

Pointing out that more than 70% of the people are directly dependent on agriculture for their livelihood support in the North-Eastern region, he urged the scientific institutions to work for development of location specific technologies which are sustainable, climate-resilient and culturally in sync with the tribal cultures of the region.

Referring to climate change, he said, there was a danger of the beautiful but ecologically fragile NE region getting impacted by the rise in global temperatures. “ Therefore, I urge our scientists and researchers to focus their attention on the likely problems farmers might face due to global warming and find suitable solutions”, he added.

Lauding the North Eastern States for their focus on organic agriculture, he said “In this field, you are showing the way to the rest of India. He urged other Indian states to learn from the organic farming success stories of the North Eastern States.

Reiterating that technical knowhow generated in a laboratory has no meaning unless it reaches the farmers, the Vice President said “Seamless transfer of knowledge from ‘Lab to land’ should be our constant endeavour”.

He complimented both the Institutes for their initiatives towards doubling the farmers’ income and creating self-reliant and self-sustaining tribal communities.

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