Director Sericulture initiates major mulberry plantation drive along Kashmir national highway

Ajaz Bhat highlights environmental, aesthetic benefits of mulberry plantations along NH


PAMPORE: In a significant initiative aimed at boosting both environmental sustainability and the silk industry, Director Sericulture J&K, Ajaz Ahmad Bhat (IAS), chaired a pivotal meeting at the Central Sericultural Research and Training Institute (CSR&TI) Pampore and visited National Highway Pampore area of south Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Thursday.

The session, held in collaboration with the Central Silk Board, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, focused on an extensive mulberry plantation project along the National Highway in Kashmir Valley. This ambitious project aims to enhance the green cover along the highway, offering environmental benefits and serving as a valuable source of high-quality mulberry leaves for local silkworm rearers. The initiative aligns with the shared goals of promoting sustainable sericulture and bolstering the region’s silk industry, officials told Kashmir Reader.

During the meeting, Director Bhat emphasized the importance of establishing a reliable source of high-quality mulberry leaves to support local silkworm rearers. “An abundant supply of mulberry leaves will significantly increase silk cocoon production in J&K,” Bhat said. “This, in turn, will ensure a steady flow of raw materials like silk cocoons and yarn, boosting the silk industry and enhancing the socio-economic fabric of the region.”

Bhat also highlighted the employment opportunities that will arise from the project, particularly in plantation management and silk cocoon production. He underscored the environmental benefits of increased green cover, noting that mulberry trees act as natural air purifiers, absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen, thereby improving air quality.

“The mulberry trees will not only clean the air but also add to the aesthetic appeal of the National Highway, creating a scenic environment for travellers,” he added.

The Director expressed confidence that this collaborative effort with the Central Silk Board would set a new benchmark in sustainable sericulture practices, contributing to a greener and more prosperous Kashmir Valley.

The meeting was attended by Director, Central Sericultural Research & Training Institute (CSR&TI), MoT, GoI, Pampore, Additional Director Sericulture Development Department, Kashmir, Development Officer, Sericulture Development Department, Rajouri, Project Executive Officer, Sericulture Development Department, Kashmir, Srinagar, District Sericulture Officer, Pulwama, Anantnag, Budgam and other senior officers.

“The central silk board conducted a visit to the national highway in Pampore. We have a joint venture with the central silk board for plantation of mulberry trees along the national highway,” Director Sericulture told Kashmir Reader, adding that the joint venture will have dual benefits.

“The tree will provide leaf foliage and also help in cleaning the environment,” he said, adding that the mulberry leaves attract dust particles like a magnet attracts iron filings and thereby help in keeping the environment clean.

He said that they will strive to achieve the target along with the central silk board given to them by the national highway authority of India.


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