DTI News

May 20, 2024
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“President Murmu Bihar Visit: Spotlight on historical ties and agenda for Bihar’s agricultural progress”

President Murmu Bihar Visit: President Draupadi Murmu commenced her three-day visit to Bihar, inaugurating the fourth agricultural roadmap at the Bapu Auditorium in Patna today. Acknowledging the strides made in Bihar’s development, President Murmu expressed her delight with the state’s advancement, highlighting the longstanding historical and cultural ties between Bihar and her home state, Odisha.

Recalling her observations during a prior visit to Suriname, President Murmu lauded Bihar’s rich history, citing its position as one of the oldest civilizations globally. Acknowledging the pivotal role agriculture plays in shaping human civilization, she emphasized its significance within Bihar’s economy, contributing substantially to the state’s GDP.

Stressing the importance of agricultural sector growth, President Murmu praised the Bihar government’s efforts in enhancing agricultural productivity, citing the doubling of paddy and wheat yields, as well as significant progress in mushroom, makhana, and fish production. The launch of the fourth agricultural roadmap signals an ambitious strategy aimed at bolstering these advancements over the next five years.

President Murmu urged Bihar’s farmers to embrace organic farming, underscoring its potential to amplify both production and income. Highlighting the government’s creation of an organic corridor along the banks of the Ganga, she also addressed critical issues like water conservation within the state.

President Murmu pledged to maintain regular visits to Bihar, emphasizing her deep connection and commitment to the state. Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, also present at the event, echoed President Murmu’s sentiments, assuring the audience that the fourth agricultural roadmap’s comprehensive provisions would eliminate the necessity for a fifth iteration. He emphasized the government’s significant budgetary allocation of Rs 1.63 lakh crore for this purpose, ensuring heightened farmer income and an integrated approach toward irrigation, animal husbandry, and electricity provisions.

According to the official press statement, she said, The farming community in Bihar is renowned for their continuous efforts to experiment with and embrace new agricultural techniques. It is this dedication that led a Nobel Prize-winning economist to laud the farmers of Nalanda as being even superior to scientists. The coexistence of modern and traditional farming methods within this region is indeed a cause for celebration, signifying a remarkable harmony between tradition and modernity. Notably, recognizing this unique agricultural culture, the first agricultural research center in India was established in 1905 at Pusa in Bihar.

In the present era, there is a significant surge in demand for organic products both within the country and abroad. It is imperative for the farming community in Bihar to capitalize on this trend. Organic farming not only aids in reducing the costs of agriculture and safeguarding the environment, but also has the potential to enhance the farmers’ income and provide nutrient-rich food to the populace. It is heartening to note that the Bihar government has established an organic corridor along the Ganga in various districts, promoting organic farming and fostering a symbiotic relationship between agriculture and animal husbandry. Leveraging agricultural waste and weeds as fodder for animals and utilizing animal dung as organic fertilizer can further fortify this bond, particularly for the numerous marginal farmers in Bihar who may find the use of modern equipment economically challenging, she added.

The pervasive issue of global warming and climate change poses a significant threat to humanity, particularly to the vulnerable and marginalized communities. Bihar, a traditionally water-rich state, has faced reduced rainfall in recent times, necessitating a focused approach towards water conservation to preserve its natural identity. In this context, Climate Resilient Agriculture can play a pivotal role in addressing the challenges posed by climate change. By fostering biodiversity, reducing water exploitation, conserving soil fertility, and ensuring a balanced diet for all, this approach can effectively mitigate the impact of climate change, as per press statement.

Furthermore, the commendable initiative to produce ethanol from maize, a major crop in Bihar, holds substantial promise in reducing reliance on fossil fuels, safeguarding the environment, and bolstering the country’s energy security.

Bihar’s abundant production of vegetables and fruits, including pineapple, mango, banana, guava, litchi, cabbage, brinjal, potato, and onion, contributes significantly to the state’s economy and environment. However, challenges related to storage, transportation, and marketing hinder large-scale production of these perishable goods. Creating adequate storage facilities, establishing cost-effective and reliable transportation networks, and expanding market access can significantly boost the production of fruits and vegetables. It is gratifying to note that the Fourth Agriculture Road Map includes provisions for the development of processing units, the establishment of mega food parks, and the enhancement of export infrastructure, thus laying a solid foundation for the growth and prosperity of the agricultural sector in Bihar.

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