TODAY -

CM Biren bats for organic farming
Source: Chronicle News Service

Imphal, April 13 2022: Chief minister N Biren has appealed to farmers of the state for a gradual shift towards organic food production from chemical fertiliser-based farming for a healthier society.

Addressing farmers as well as officials of Agriculture Department at the Farmers' Meet cum Interaction Programme held at City Convention Centre on Wednesday, CM Biren noted that use of chemical fertilisers has given rise to various diseases, and as such it is essential that farmers adopt organic farming.

He advised that a Farmers' Cell should be set up by the department on the lines of 'CM Da Haisi' with toll-free phone numbers, where a dedicated set of officials and staff will receive grievances from the farmers and act to resolve them.

He also opined that the cell will help in narrowing the gap between the officials and the farmers as well as developing the agriculture sector.

N Biren also cited a few grievances highlighted by the farmers and called upon the officials to bring transparency and be sincere in their jobs.

Pointing out that despite the state producing large quantity of paddy and other crops, due to low price of imported produce there is no market for the local produces, he said that the government is closely looking into the matter with plans for utilising rice produced in the state for NFSA distribution.

Explaining the importance of the agriculture sector, N Biren mentioned that Prime Minister is determined to ensure India becomes self reliant in food grain production.

He also informed that 30 ground water pumps and wells have been installed in the state and using geo-tagging, surveys are on in the presence of media.

Most of the pumps are working but some are not due to absence of solar power pump.

Minor irrigation project at the cost of Rs 360 crore has also been started and very soon ground water pumps will be installed in farmlands that do not have one installed.

Farmers cannot be asked to increase the yield without a proper market to sell their products, the CM stated, explaining that without a proper market, their products Will perish which will only discourage them.

Stating that the e-marketing system has made it easier to sell products, he stressed that department officials ought to be responsible to market the farmers' products.

Hinting that there was a lack of transparency, coordination, and communication among the departments, the chief minister said government departments should be correlated and coordinated.

He emphasised that joint efforts of the Agriculture, Forest, Minor Irrigation, CADA, Horticulture, Veterinary departments are necessary to develop agriculture in the state and to look into the grievances highlighted by the farmers.

As the functional president, agriculture minister Th Biswajit assured that the department will closely monitor the problems faced by the farmers and initiate necessary action to address them.

Noting that water is essential for farming, he conceded that as government cannot address all the shortcomings, farmers shall need to take some initiative to irrigate their fields.

If there is proper coordination amongst the department and farmers then most of their issues can be solved, he noted and informed that the Cabinet will very soon discuss opening of a market especially for organic produces.

The meeting cum interaction programme, organised by the Directorate of Agriculture was also attended by agriculture commissioner M Joy Singh, agriculture director N Gojendro and subject experts.

During the event, farmers from across the state highlighted their grievances on various issues including lack of proper irrigation facilities, machineries, fertilisers, provision of seeds by the officials in time, provision of quality seeds, organic fertiliser, lack of awareness on crop insurance, among others.


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