1500 accessions of rice on display at MRCF Khudwani

Atul Dulloo inaugurates exhibition

SRINAGAR: A mesmerizing live exhibition of the rich rice biodiversity is at display these days at MountainResearch Centre for Field Crops of SKUAST-Kashmir at Khudwani.This in-situ exhibition has on display more than 1500 accessions of rice which include variants of 1940s, likeMushkbudji, Zag, Larbeuol, Nunbeuol, Kamad etc. majority of evolved varieties such as China series, K-39, K-332 and the latest Shalimar Rice series.
The concerted efforts of the Centre in breeding high yielding rice varieties has raised the yield potential of 1 t/ha to high yielding varieties like SR-4, whose yield potential is as high as 8-10 t/ha.The exhibition also demonstrates the pipeline varieties of better yield and quality, in-situ germplasm conservation strategies, resource management, rice based cropping systems, plant protection modules and diversification towards high value rice and corn for higher farm income.The exhibition was inaugurated by AtulDullo, IAS, Financial Commissioner (Additional Chief Secretary), Agriculture Production & Farmers Welfare Department, GoJK on 27th August, 2022. On this occasion he also inaugurated the GermplasmConservation Repository and Plant Growth Chamber. The chief guest lauded the efforts of the Centre in breeding high yielding and stress tolerant varieties of rice, oilseed and wheat. He impressed upon scientists to work for doubling the farmers’ income by increasing the cropping intensity to 200%, integrated farming systems, production of exotic vegetables, promotion of mushroom cultivation, apiculture and medicinal plants. He urged upon the University and Department of Agriculture for strengthening the cooperation for efficient delivery of demand driven services.
AtulDullooattended to the grievances of the farming community and assured speedy redressal. Prof. Nazir Ahmad Ganai, Vice Chancellor, SKUAST-K on the occasion highlighted the importance of food and nutritional security for the UT of J&K. He elaborated the importance of the Centre in rice blast and wheat leaf rust screening at the national level. He further urged the stakeholders to diversify the cropping system towards high value crops and functional foods for higher income and nutritional security. Prof Sarfaraz A. Wani, Director Research SKUAST-K highlighted the role of the centre in crop breeding and resource management technologies for which the centre deserves to be declared as the centre of excellence at the national level. Iqbal Choudhary, Director, Department of Agriculture (Kashmir), while highlighting the role of Agriculture Department, acknowledged the contribution SKUAST-K indevelopment of high yielding varieties of crops including rice, wheat, oats and making available the breeder seed the Department. Prof. Najeeb R. Sofi, Associate Director, MRCFC, Khudwani presented an overview of the Centre and the live demonstration of rice biodiversity and ongoing experimental trials of Agronomy, PlantPathology and Entomology. Role of specialty corn particularly sweet corn in improving the farmers’ income was also highlighted on the occasion. The exhibition was also attended by DC Kulgam; ADC Anantnag; Prof. D.M MakhdoomiDirector Extension; Dr. T.H. Masoodi, Registrar; Dr.Rehana Habib,Dean FoA, Wadura and other field functionaries of development departments.

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