Governor N.N. Vohra, Chancellor of the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology-Kashmir, (SKUAST-K), inaugurated the “25th Annual Workshop of All India Network Projects on Pesticide Residues” at the Shalimar Campus of the University here today. This 2 day Workshop has been organized by SKUAST-K in collaboration with the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), New Delhi. He also inaugurated the University’s newly established School of Agricultural Economics and Horti-Business Management; Centre of Excellence in Mountain Ecosystem Management, and Division of Biotechnology within the Campus.
Highlighting the serious challenges confronting our agricultural sector, Governor emphasised the crucial importance of striking a harmonious balance between ensuring food security, food safety and protection of the environment. He observed that it is extremely important to safeguard biodiversity from getting unfavourably affected due to inimical human activities and emphasised that productive agriculture cannot sustain in the absence of environmental balance.
Governor observed that after the advent of the first Green Revolution, the intensive use of fertilizers and excessive exploitation of underground water has led to the emergence of deficiencies in micro nutrients, soil erosion and many other problems. As the country is working to usher in the 2nd Green Revolution it is important that we achieve near perfect balance between food security, food security and environmental balance.
Governor stressed the need to tackle issues relating to agriculture with confidence and hoped that our agricultural scientists, and farmers will work hard to achieve the goals of the 2nd Green Revolution and sustain India’s present status of being a major food exporting country whereas it was suffering from extreme food security a few decades ago.
Governor complimented Prof. Nazeer Ahmed, Vice-Chancellor of the University, for establishing quality infrastructure and research faculties at the University. He stressed the need for Farm Universities to reach a significant number of research scientists for carrying out quality research in identified areas of agriculture and its allied sectors. He thanked Dr. J.S. Sandhu and his colleagues from ICAR for providing ICAR’s strong support to SKUAST-K
Dr. Jeet Singh Sandhu, Deputy Director General (Crop Science) ICAR, Dr. P.K. Chakrabarty, Assistant Director General, (Plant Protection) ICAR and Prof. Nazeer Ahmed, Vice Chancellor SKUAST-K, gave scientific inputs about the ongoing efforts in keeping a check on and minimising pesticide residues in food crops. Dr. K.K. Sharma, Project Coordinator, ICAR-All India Network Project on Pesticide Residues, Indian Agricultural Research Institute gave the introduction of the Workshop.
The Welcome Address was given by Dr. M.Y. Zargar, Director Research SKUAST-K and Vote of Thanks by Dr. Ashraf Alam, Organizing Secretary.