Gurdev Singh Khush foundation holds lecture and award ceremony at PAU
(Stop free electricity, remove subsidy on fertilizer: Montek Singh Ahluwalia)
LUDHIANA, March 9…
We need to consider quantity rationing of water usage by stopping free electricity and curb the subsidy on fertilizer over five years, said Dr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, eminent economist and former Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission, Government of India while delivering his talk on " Challenges in Agriculture: Some Policy Options” at the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) today. 14 students and scientists of PAU were awarded the G.S. Khush travel grant for participation in conferences in India and abroad, while another 38 from PAU and 14 from GADVASU were bestowed with the G.S. Khush Merit Scholarship at the annual award ceremony of the Gurdev Singh Khush Foundation for Advancement of Agricultural Sciences. The dignitaries on the dais also included Dr Gurdev Singh Khush, PAU alumnus and father of the rice revolution, Mrs Harwant Khush, Dr B.S. Dhillon, PAU Vice Chancellor, Dr S.S. Johl, Chancellor, Central University of Punjab, Dr K.S. Gill, former Vice Chancellor, PAU, Dr A.S. Nanda, Vice Chancellor, GADVASU and Dr D.S. Brar, Secretary, Khush Foundation.
Dr Ahluwalia, while addressing a huge gathering of faculty members at the Pal Auditorium emphasized on the need to have an educated and informed electorate so that government leaders can be held accountable for relevant targets. He also pointed the absence of a risk mitigating system in agriculture that is one of the chief reasons of farm distress. While stressing on the need for pro farmer policies Dr Ahluwalia recalled the period from 2004 to 2011 when the country reported increase in farm income and biggest decline in poverty. “The factors responsible were better land productivity, supportive prices for farmers, boom in construction investment and increase in farm product prices”, he elaborated. Dr Ahluwalia further stressed on the need to diversify from cereals to horticultural crops and setting of transformational targets to capture these changes over a period of ten years. “ Diversification to maize can be an important change for Punjab as also dairy if the CM’s objective of getting out of paddy is to be achieved”, he observed. While suggesting the development of integrated value chains as a part of the ‘plough to plate’ approach, Dr Ahluwalia appealed for conviction on the part of the policy makers towards eliminating policy constraints. He highlighted the imminent need for judicious use of water which he said can be achieved by having public sector pumps responsible for quantity rationing. Voicing his concern in the field of research, the economist said that we need to think about institution structures and vested interests in the system that deny flexibility to the academia to do ground breaking research. He called for shift in attitude and more clarity towards the requirement of GM crops, failing which we will be negatively unique in the world, given the high degree of threat of climate change that looms in front of us. Dr G.S. Khush congratulated the award winners and motivated them to strive for further excellence in their fields. He also urged the rural students to dream and work hard to achieve them.
Earlier Dr Dhillon welcomed the dignitaries and formally introduced the speaker of the day. He dismissed agricultural distress in the state citing record productivity in non basmati rice, wheat and cotton, and rather stressed on the need for strong policy interventions to boost agriculture in Punjab.
PAU PLANT PATHOLOGY STUDENTS SHINE AT NATIONAL LEVEL
Ludhiana, March 9…
Three Ph.D. students from Department of Plant Pathology brought laurels to Punjab Agricultural University for being awarded at National level. Mr Sumit Kumar Aggarwal, working on mapping of sheath blight resistance in rice has been selected as a Scientist by Agricultural Scientists Recruitment Board, New Delhi. He secured fifth rank in ARS-2016.
Mr Manmohan Dhkal, working on management of cucurbit viruses, and Mr Harpreet Singh, working on wheat rust pathogen have been awarded the prestigious INSPIRE fellowship by Department of Science and Technology. The award carries a monthly stipend of Rs 25,000 and an annual contingency of Rs 20,000. Dr P.S. Sekhon, Head of the Department, Dr S.S. Kukal, Dean PGS and Dr B.S. Dhillon, Vice Chancellor congratulated the students and exhorted them to keep working hard in their respective research areas.
PAU ORGANIZES MINI FAIR FOR FARM WOMEN
Ludhiana, March 9
The College of Home Science, Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), organised a Mini Farm Women Fair in the village Begowal under the “Rural Awareness Work Experience” on March 8, 2018. According to Dr. Kiranjot Sidhu, Head, Department of Extension Education and Communication Management, the fair marked the conclusion of eight week RAWE programme offered as a work experience to the final year students of B.Sc.(Hons.) Home Science and the celebration of International Women’s Day. The course Incharge , Dr. Kanwaljit Kaur, elaborated about the programme under which 35 families were adopted by the students for imparting knowledge and skills regarding practices and technologies from the areas of Food and Nutrition, Apparel and Textile Science, Human Development and Family Resource Management. ‘Dhiyan Di Lohri’, ‘Safe Drinking Water Campaign’, rally on ‘Anti - Drug Addiction’ and poster competition on ‘Save Environment’ was organized by students under the able guidance of faculty of department of Extension Education and Communication Management. Besides this, two farm families were motivated to install Bio-gas plants collaboration with PEDA. Efforts were made to popularize solar based devices for household use.
An exhibition depicting activities undertaken in the village during RAWE was inaugurated by the chief guest, Dr. J. K. Gulati, Dean College of Home Science, PAU, Ludhiana. She also appreciated the efforts of the students and the villagers, particularly the village sarpanch Mrs. Tejinder Kaur in making the programme a great success. She motivated women to develop skills to undertake income generation activities for enhancing family income.
Dr. R. S Sahota, Ex DEE, GADVASU, Ludhiana, delivered a lecture on animal health and management. Dr. Kulbir Singh, Professor Vegetable Science, highlighted the importance of kitchen gardening for better family health. Feedback regarding RAWE activities was presented by Ms. Gurwinder Kaur, a resident of village Begowal.
PAU TO ORGANIZE KISAN MELA AT GURDASPUR ON MARCH 14
Ludhiana, March 9
The Punjab Agricultural University will showcase its latest farm technologies for ensuing Kharif crops and the standing Rabi crops at the Regional research Station Gurdaspur on March 14, 2018. This year’s Mela theme, “Let's reduce the cost of farming; use water and fertilizers wisely; and make farming profitable with subsidiary business” is aimed at promoting sustainable agriculture.
Farmers can take a look at the demonstration plots of Rabi crops and the exhibitions displayed by various departments. Additionally they will have a platform to interact with the representatives of PAU departments to dispel their apprehensions and get information on useful technology aids. The farmers can buy seeds of Kharif crops and mini kits of vegetables, fruit plants etc.