Jammu: Lt Governor Manoj Sinha Tuesday said that this decade in agriculture and horticulture sector belongs to Jammu and Kashmir.
An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that inaugurating the Mega Fruit Plant Nursery at Chakroi in R S Pura, the LG congratulated the farmers and fruit growers on the occasion.
He said that the nursery would provide best technologies as well as true-to-type quality planting material that would reshape the horticulture sector in the area.
“It is a massive achievement that in one year a mega fruit plant nursery has been established in an area where cross border shelling was a normal thing in fields,” the LG said. “The policies through holistic development plan have laid the foundations for a sea change in J&K's economic growth.”
He shared the vision of the government to bring a significant change in the lives of farmers of J&K and accelerate the growth of J&K’s economy.
“Our effort is to make sub-tropical fruit cultivation a multi-faceted business by increasing efficiency of orchards with the help of various interventions like setting up new nurseries and new plant material testing labs,” the LG said. “The government is committed to serve the present and future needs of farmers in an integrated manner. Our endeavour is also to convert the potential of farms and orchards into farmer's power and transform all the districts of both Kashmir and Jammu divisions into a hub of export with the cultivation of niche crops and value addition of special products.”
He said that to meet the future challenges and to ensure a new wave of growth momentum, 29 projects approved by the Apex Committee for Holistic Development of Agriculture and Allied Sectors were being implemented.
“The plan worth Rs 5013 crores will bring significant change in the lives of around 13 lakh farming families of J&K including 2.62 lakh small and marginal farming families,” the LG said.
He said no other region in the country had made such a revolutionary intervention in the agriculture and allied sector.
“All arrangements, from seed to market have been made through the implementation framework of the plan,” the LG said.
He said Prime Minister Narendra Modi had ensured that there would be no shortage of funds for farmers of J&K.
The LG also suggested improving productivity and tackling challenges as well as opportunities of the agriculture and allied sectors.
“A strong agricultural marketing ecosystem will increase the farm income and reduce the value loss. We are working on covering the entire value chain including inputs, harvesting, processing, packing, storage, besides meeting the need of quality planting material and developing infrastructure and other facilities while taking climatic conditions into consideration,” he said. “We have also made provisions to arrange and grow 80 percent of fodder requirements locally within J&K.”
Speaking on the services extended by the government, the LG said that around 31 lakh land passbooks have been generated and more than 400 public services have been made fully online with a provision of Public Services Guarantee Act.
On the issue of proper functioning of the Ranbir Canal, he said that a permanent solution via a policy for uninterrupted and proper functioning of the Ranbir Canal would be ensured.
The LG also clarified that there was no such rule for compulsory buying of cattle from outside the region to avail the subsidy.
“And if there is any, I declare it null and void,” he said.
Chairman District Development Council (DDC) Jammu, Bharat Bhushan extended his gratitude to the Centre under PM Modi for ensuring peace in border areas, which led to development works like the Mega Fruit Plant Nursery at Chakroi.
Additional Chief Secretary, Agriculture Production Department, Atal Dulloo congratulated the Horticulture Department for completing the project of Mega Fruit Plant Nursery within a stipulated time frame.
This mega fruit plant nursery established with state-of-the-art equipment like automatic weather monitoring system would facilitate easy supply of quality fruit saplings.
VC SKUAST Jammu, Prof J P Sharma stressed the need to convert low-density orchards into high-density orchards and increase farmer’s income through horticulture.
An official spokesman said: “The Mega Fruit Plant Nursery houses 50 different blocks for growing mother plants of different fruits including citrus fruits. Spanning over more than 800 kanal, the Mega Fruit Plant Nursery will grow and provide saplings of guava, mango, litchi, other citrus fruits and also of the dragon fruit. It is the biggest fruit nursery in north India. In the coming time, 10 lakh saplings of fruit plants will be distributed to farmers. Micro irrigation system was also established in the mega fruit nursery for irrigation in addition to other advanced facilities and modern equipment. Tissue culture lab and other labs will also be established in the coming time.”
Several publications including Mega Fruit Plant Nursery Chakroi Magazine, cultivation of litchi and strawberry and strategic management of stone fruit were also released on the occasion.
The LG also planted a sapling in the premises of the nursery to mark the occasion.
Divisional Commissioner Jammu Ramesh Kumar, Deputy Commissioner Jammu Avny Lavasa, and Director Horticulture Jammu Ram Savak were also present at the inauguration event.