SRINAGAR: The programme on Curtain Raiser for “International Year of Millets 2023” was celebrated on September 17, 2021 in the auditorium of Faculty of Agriculture, Wadura under the Chairmanship of Prof. A.H.Hakeem, Dean Faculty of Agriculture. The main aim of the programme was to help millet farmers get decent revenues by capitalizing on their crop getting international recognition. The real success of observing international millet year comes only when we take measures to help our farmers to reap the benefits. The programme was virtually e-inaugurated by Shri Narendra Singh Tomar, Hon’ble Union Minister of Agriculture & Farmers Welfare. All the Agricultural Universities, ICAR units and more than 700 KVKs across the country attended the programme virtually. The Centre’s efforts to get international recognition for these nutrient-rich crops have yielded results with the United Nations declaring 2023 as the International Year of millets The Hon’ble Union Minister has said that millets have three different dimensions of climate, nutrition, and cultural quotient. This is because they are climate-resilient and suit in dryland areas and have high nutritional value. They are also related to culture of the society as they are an integral part of food habits. The Minister also said that under the millet mission, an initiative has been taken to give the farmers the right price for small cereal crops, provide input assistance, procurement arrangements, processing and ensure that the farmers get benefited. Besides, arrangement will be made for training the farmers through KVKs for spreading the scientific technology developed at the national level related to millet production by IIMR, Hyderabad. In view of the demand for millets in the country, the millet mission will increase the income of the farmers of tribal areas and also provide employment to farmers, women groups and youth. He also highlighted the emphasis of Central Govt. for the revival of the agriculture sector and underscored the importance of the agriculture sector in taking forward the vision of Atma Nirbhar Bharat.
Dean FoA, in his address said that millet crops are rich in nutrition & it is a rare occasion to help millet growers, who are mostly poor and marginal farmers from rainfed areas, and this has the potential to change the fortunes of millet growers. He also observed that humble millets are set to go global and the future belongs to these crops as it requires less inputs as compared to wheat and rice. He also hoped that by declaring 2023 as the International Year of Millets, more attention will be paid to this important grai.