SRINAGAR: Department of Horticulture in its continuous efforts to reach out to the tribal population and far-flung areas of the valley today organized a second awareness camp especially for tribal population at Surfraw, Kangan District Ganderbal. Director General Horticulture Kashmir Aijaz Ahmad Bhat (JKAS) was the chief guest of the function and he was accompanied by Chief Horticulture Officer Ganderbal. Among others, DDC member Gund-A, Gund-B, BDC Chairperson Gund & Kangan, President Tribal welfare, District President Gujar & Bakarwal Youth Forum, representatives of line departments participated in the camp. The camp was attended by a large number of progressive orchardists, particularly those belonging to Tribal papulation.
The main focus of the training/awareness camp was to aware the tribal and far-flung papulation about the different departmental Schemes. During the camp the representative of all the departments highlighted their schemes and appraised the participants about the different initiatives taken by UT Government for the employment generation and betterment of Tribal Community.
In his address, Director General Horticulture, elaborated in detail about the incentives available under the various central and UT sponsored schemes of the department and urged the tribal farmers to come forward, associate with the Horticulture Department and avail the benefits of different components viz: establishment HD and traditional orchards, establishment of nurseries, installation of Polyhouses, Borewells, construction of Pack Houses & Vermi-Compost pits, horticultural machinery etc. for upliftment of their socio- economic status.
To realize the dream of Prime Minister of India for doubling farmers’ income by 2022, DG Horticulture said that the area has a great potential in horticulture particularly area expansion as there is lot fallow land available. He further added that the Department is committed for the betterment of the tribals and will play its role in uplifting their living standard. He also advocated for the diversification of horticulture in the area by establishing orchards of different fruits like hazelnut, walnut, pear, strawberry, stone fruits etc. as per the feasibility. DG, assured that the Department will provide special training courses regarding fruit processing, training & pruning of fruit trees for the tribal youth.
PRIs thanked the department for organizing the event. They demanded that a sub-office of the department may be opened in the area and also urged the DG to depute the Mobile Soil Testing Laboratory (MSTL).
At the end DG thanked all the participants. In response to the demands put forth by the locals, He said that the MSTL will soon be deputed to the area and regarding the opening of sub-office, He assured them the matter will be taken put the higherups. Director General then distributed vermicompost/machinery authorizations among the participants. He further distributed stationary items among the needy children.