Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University
Agriculture is the mainstay of the Bundelkhand economy. The semi-arid climate with uncertain rainfall and poor quality soils have made agriculture a difficult and non-beneficial proposition in the entire region. It is a hard rock area with limited or inadequate ground water resources, lacks infrastructure, access to improved technologies, markets and inputs as a result of which the crop productivity is amongst the lowest in the Country. Inadequacy of resources has prevented many farmers from switching to more efficient farming methods. As such, most of the agriculture has become subsistence agriculture and keeps the farmers of the region trapped in poverty. Educational opportunities are few and the adult literacy remains low in the region.
To overcome the constraints of region, the memorandum dated 27 July, 2009 was submitted to the Prime Minister by delegation of MPs/MLAs requesting that a comprehensive package for Bundelkhand region including a CAU may be considered.
Thereafter, DARE forwarded the detailed proposal to the Planning Commission on 31 August, 2009. The proposals of DARE were agreed to during a meeting held on 14 September, 2009 in the Office of Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister. On 7 October, 2009 the Planning Commission conveyed in principle approval for setting up a new CAU in Bundelkhand and asked DARE to provide a token amount of fund from within the approved outlay/budget.
The Union Agriculture Minster dated 28.10.2010 addressed to the Chief Minister, Government of Uttar Pradesh indicated that the Government of India have decided to set up a Central Agricultural University for Bundelkhand region. The CAU Headquarters is proposed to be set up on 300 acres of land currently with the ICAR campuses of Indian Grassland & Fodder Research Institute (IGFRI) and National Research Centre for Agroforestry (NRCAF) with colleges in both Uttar Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh portions of the Bundelkhand region.
The Bill for the establishment of University was moved for introduction in the Rajya Sabha on 28 December, 2011. After some clarifications, the Bill was again moved for introduction in the Rajya Sabha on 22 May, 2012. On 8 June, 2012, Speaker, Lok Sabha asked the Committee to examine the Bill and Report to the Parliament. After the submission of the report and response of the Deaprtment Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University Act was passed byy both the houses and published on 5th March 2014.