Ranchi, Feb. 9: Eminent soil scientist and former executive director of MS Swaminathan Research Foundation, Chennai, M. Velayutham today stressed on the need to set up a state farmers’ commission to boost agriculture.
Delivering the Prof. SC Mandal Memorial Lecture at Birsa Agriculture University (BAU) in Ranchi, Velayutham pointed out that the National Commission of Farmers set up by the Centre could not bring about desired changes in the state agriculture scenario as every state had its own priorities, needs and problems. Pointing out that foodgrain production was short of demand, he suggested that Jharkhand should set up its own commission.
Velayutham also called for state agriculture price commission, state seed corporation, watershed development board, fisheries development board and technology missions besides a state agriculture policy and a state water policy to ensure all-round development of agriculture and allied activities.
“India will need 325 million tonnes of foodgrain by 2025. To achieve this target, production will have to be raised by 7 million tonnes each year over the next 15 years,” Velayutham said.
“Every village should have a knowledge centre and a cluster of villages should have teleconferencing facilities within every 10km to 15km radius. This experiment proved successful in Tamil Nadu,” he added.