Agriculture research fails to reach farmers: Mir

Kashmir lags behind Jammu in maize production, produces 1.6 tons per hectare against Jammu’s 2.2 tons


Sajad Kralyari
Srinagar, April 12:



Expressing concern over low production of maize in Jammu and Kashmir, Minister for Agriculture and Co-operatives Ghulam Hassan Mir Monday said that research carried out at the SK University of Agriculture Science and Technology (SKUAST) Kashmir does not reach farmers due to which “our average annual production is far less than average national maize production.”



“Three lakh hectares of land are under maize cultivation in Jammu and Kashmir. The average maize production in Kashmir is 1.57 tons which is far less. Research conducted at laboratories should reach farmers, which can increase production of this vital crop,” said Mir at the valedictory function of 3-day 53rd AICRP Maize Workshop organized by SKUAST-K at SKICC.









Mir said raising of maize crop in JK is fraught with enormous challenges due to unique climatic conditions.



“We have climatic constraints which act as stumbling blocks for producing this crop. University has released hybrid maize which can improve production of this essential crop,” said the Agriculture minister.



However, the minister hailed the University for carrying out Frontline Demonstrations, which he said have yielded good results.



“These demonstrations would help improve quality maize and increase production,” said Mir.



The minister also stressed on raising the crop near tourist places for generating employment and food security.



“The land at tourist places like Tangmarg, Shopian, Pahalgam and Pulwama are well irrigated and can yield good produce. The pop corn and sweet corn production can generate employment,” said Mir.



He stressed on implementation of the recommendations made at the conclusion of the 3-day workshop.



Speaking on the occasion VC SKUAST-K, Prof Anwar Alam also admitted that production of the maize in JK is low.



“Maize cultivation covers large area but its production is not good. This is a cause of concern,” said Prof Alam. “We had a tradition of growing corn but now it has gone,” he said adding that average production of maize in the State is nearly 2 tons per hectare which is low.



“Kashmir is lagging behind with average production at 1.6 tons per hectare while as Jammu produces 2.2 tons per hectare,” said Alam.



However, the VC said University has been doing the front line demonstrations for the past 3 years which has shown good results.



“During these demonstrations the average production was recorded at 3-7 tons per hectare. The newly introduced varieties produced good results,” said Alam.



He said JK is facing acute shortage of meat and poultry.



“If we want to meet this shortage we have to rare animals for which we need feed and fodder. This can be produced from maize,” said Alam.



Referring to the demand for pop and sweet cons by visiting tourists , Alam said Kashmir was a tourist place and maize production would help generate employment.



Earlier, the scientists from different states who participated in the workshop came up with the recommendations for improving the maize production.



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The valedictory function was also attended by former VC of SKUAST-K Hashmatulah Khan, Director Agriculture Mian Majeed, Project Director on Maize Sian Dass, Director Research SKUAST-K, Dr A R Trag besides other scientist.


Thanks : The Daily Rising Kashmir

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