Hailing Baramati as a role model for agriculture research centres in the country, Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu today said Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVK) must act as a bridge between scientists and farmers in providing knowledge and latest techniques.
Speaking after visiting the KVK in Baramati, Naidu said it is helping empower rural youth.
Naidu also lauded efforts of former Union agriculture minister and NCP chief Sharad Pawar who was present on the occasion, for transforming Baramati under his leadership.
Naidu asked KVKs to play an active role in making agriculture remunerative by training farmers in allied sectors like sericulture, dairy, poultry, fisheries, seed processing and others.
"Improving the livelihood of people dependent on agriculture must be made top priority. People living in rural areas must be part of the development and there is a need to establish a regular dialogue between farmers, policymakers and scientists, he added.
"Krishi Vigyan Kendras must act as a bridge between scientists and farmers in providing knowledge and latest farming techniques to farmers," he said.
Later, speaking to reporters, Naidu heaped praise on Pawar, and said he has always had a special affinity for the NCP chief.
"I have had a special liking for Pawar irrespective of parties, because of his rural background, his practical understanding about (agriculture) and down-to-the-earth attitude.
"My respect for him has further gone up today after seeing the transformation brought in by him," the vice president said.
Naidu also visited the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables (an Indo-Dutch Project) and enquired about the technological advancements in vegetable farming. At the KVK, he also interacted with students at the Atal Tinkering Lab.
On his arrival at the Baramati airport, Naidu was received by Lok Sabha member and Pawar's daughter Supriya Sule and NCP leader Ajit Pawar. With Sharad Pawar by his side, Naidu visited the KVK's farmers training centre and interacted with people there.
In February 2015, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had visited Baramati, Pawars hometown, to inaugurate the Krishi Vigyan Kendra building.
In October 2015, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley visited Baramati and hailed Sharad Pawar's contribution in making his home turf Baramati as one of the most developed regions in the country.