New Delhi, Sep 18 (UNI) A two-day National Conference on Agriculture for Rabi Campaign-2007 got underway here today with a call for increasing production by way of increased area coverage and productivity.
Speaking at the conference, Dr P K Mishra, Secretary, Department of Agriculture and Cooperation complimented the farming community for realising the rabi foodgrain production of 105.6 million tonnes surpassing the previous record production of 104.2 million tonnes achieved in 1999-2000 as well as the target set for 2006-07.
However, there is little room for complacency on these achievements, as the production level has not been maintaining the pace with demand, particularly in respect of oilseeds and pulses causing substantial import dependence.
Dr Mishra added that the stimulation of agricultural growth would necessitate special efforts for reversing the trend of growth deceleration with short-term to medium and long-term perspective to achieve the targeted 4.1 per cent annual growth rate during 11th Five Year Plan.
Dr N B Singh, Agricultural Commissioner, Department of Agriculture and Cooperation in his presentation on National Food Security Mission informed that the scheme would be implemented in 16 states of the country.
The Mission seeks to increase the production of rice by 10 million tonnes, wheat by 8 million tonnes and pulses by 2 million tonnes by end of 11th Plan.
Dr J S Samra, Chief Executive Officer, National Rainfed Area Authority also addressed the session.
The business session of the conference will have presentations by States on subjects like Kharif assessment and Rabi Prospects, National Food Security Mission, Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, Extension, Marketing, Availability of Seeds and Fertilisers, Best Practices adopted by the states.
Vice Chancellors of State Agricultural Universities, State Agriculture Secretaries and Commisioners and representatives from different Ministries and Departments and agricultural research organisations are attending the two-day conference.