Initiative taken under HADP, with special emphasis on promoting niche crops
Pampore: The Union Territory of Jammu and Kashmir, in collaboration with the Government of India, has taken a significant step towards sustainable agriculture with the initiation of an awareness and input distribution program focused on the cultivation of Shallot, locally known as Pran. This initiative falls under the broader framework of the Holistic Agriculture Development Programme, with a special emphasis on promoting niche crops.
Under the leadership of Vice-Chancellor Prof Nazir Ahmad Ganaie from Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agriculture Sciences & Technology, Kashmir (SKUAST-K), Director Extension SKUAST-K Dil Mohammad Maqdoomi and Research Station SKUAST-Kashmir Dusoo Pampore head Prof Bashir Ahmad Alaie distributed Shallot Pran among progressive farmers from various districts of the UT at Research Station Seed and Spices Dusoo Pampore on Saturday.
Farmers participating in the program will benefit from educational initiatives on optimal cultivation practices for Shallots, coupled with the distribution of crucial inputs to support their agricultural endeavors, officials told Kashmir Reader, adding that this holistic approach aligns with the government’s broader vision for inclusive and sustainable development in the Union Territory.
They said the program aims to educate and empower farmers about the cultivation practices of Shallot, a crop known for its nutritional value and adaptability to the local climate. Additionally, it includes the distribution of essential inputs, providing farmers with the necessary resources to enhance their crop yield and overall agricultural productivity, they added.
Speaking to Kashmir Reader, Director of Research Dr. Haroon Naik stated that Shallot seeds were distributed to farmers, specifically those from KVK Budgam, KVK Kupwara, and KVK Ganderbal. Each farmer received 25 kg of Shallot seeds, intended for cultivation on 8 marlas of land. This distribution is part of a five-year holistic agricultural development plan that aligns with their strategy for seed multiplication and the growth of this niche crop.
Dr. Naik highlighted that the seeds, valued between Rs 400 to Rs 500, have the potential to improve the economic conditions of farmers and promote the growth of Shallot. The Director emphasized that 18 quintals of Shallot seeds were distributed to farmers, offering them a unique opportunity to cultivate this crop that thrives in areas with limited water availability.
Fayaz Ahmad Peer from Kupwara expressed gratitude for receiving Shallot seeds free of cost, acknowledging the government’s positive step in providing farmers with the opportunity to cultivate Shallot (Pran). He noted the seeds’ previous unavailability in their region and thanked SKUAST-Kashmir for facilitating the cultivation of this valuable crop.