ICAR needs to re-orient research to bridge critical gap: Pawar

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New Delhi, Jan 23 (UNI) With slower pace of agriculture research in the public sector resulting in stagnation of farm production, Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar today said there was an urgent need for ICAR to reorient its research activities to bridge the critical gap between it and those achieved by other countries.

Speaking at the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) General Body meeting here, Mr Pawar said, ''the pace of innovations in agriculture unversities and research institutions in India is not satisfactory and therefore, remedial steps must be taken by the apex public sector institute.'' India has a largest contingent of 13,000 farm scientists attached to the ICAR and universities.

The ICAR must put in place highly skilled and competent human resources on the job and revise the course curriculum of farm education to make it more relevent, Mr Pawar added.

The resources for the purpose could be mobilised from the recently launched Rastriya Krishi Vikas Yojana and the National Food Security Mission. Krishi Vigyan Kendras could also play a bigger role in providing technological inputs at district level, he said.

In his presentation, ICAR Director General Mangla Rai focussed on the need for genetic improvement of crops and livestock.

Other areas which needed immediate attention were enumerated by Dr Mangla Rai as use of orgnanic manure, water havesting, soil improvement, and preparing agriculture for combating the global warming.

UNI JSS SR RK1831

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