| Chief secretary AK Sinha and (right) planning and development minister Narendra Narayan Yadav at the seminar on Friday. Picture by Deepak Kumar |
Experts and scientists on Friday stressed on innovation in agriculture to counter the threat of a slump in production owing to the weak monsoon.
Veena Upadhyaya, an expert from the National Innovation Council, stressed on new practices at a two-day national seminar titled “Unleashing Innovation” on Friday. The retired IAS officer from the Uttar Pradesh cadre, said: “The need of the hour is innovation by agriculturalists and scientists to increase production.”
She added that innovation should not be limited to only science or technology but should be diversified. Echoing the views of Updhayaya, planning and development department minister Narendra Narayan Yadav said agriculturists and scientists should bring in novelty for better yield. “Scientists and agriculturists from Bihar developed the system of root intensification (SRI) method of paddy cultivation, resulting in record yield,” he said.
Agriculture scientists from Kerala, Gujarat, Jharkhand, Maharashtra and other nations had visited Nalanda to learn the method.
Chief secretary A.K. Sinha said: “In 2011, Nalanda farmer Sumant Kumar set a world record in paddy production (264 quintal/hectare) using innovative ideas with judicious use of organic manures, chemical fertilisers and bio-fertilisers.”
During the conference, experts from different fields, including academics, would share their views on innovative ideas. Last year, the government had set up the State Innovation Council on the lines of the National Innovation Council to tap new methods being practised in different fields. Chief minister Nitish Kumar heads the State Innovation Council.
The principal secretary of the planning and development department, Vijoy Prakash, said: “People of Bihar have been innovative since ancient times. It is the result of such novel ideas that the places have mathematical and geometrical names such as Taregana (counting the stars) and others.” Prakash is a member of the State Innovation Council.