Thursday, July 18, 2024

Need to preserve agriculture heritage: Himachal Chief Secretary

Himachal Pradesh Chief Secretary Prabodh Saxena on Friday underlined the need to preserve agriculture heritage and to learn lessons from experiences in the field from across the globe.

He was speaking after inaugurating the 20th edition of the International Congress of Agricultural Museums (CIMA), organised by the International Association of Agricultural Museums (AIMA) and being held for the first time in Asia, which started at Shoolini University in Solan.

He said the state had emerged as a shining star in the realm of development and education. He emphasised that Himachal Pradesh stands as a unique example among Indian states, having transformed itself within a single generation.

The state has achieved a commendable 100 percent enrolment in education, ensured widespread electricity access, and developed an extensive network of roads, all within a remarkably short time, he said.

Saxena said the state excels in both horticulture and agriculture, with its traditional ‘Himachal Dham’ featuring an array of pulses and rice, reflecting its rich cultural heritage.

The apple industry, a cornerstone of the state’s economy, has great potential for growth, requiring a technological infusion to bolster crop yields.

He called upon individuals with strong domain knowledge to proactively contribute to the preservation of agriculture, stating that this conference would leave an indelible mark.

Agriculture and Horticulture Secretary C. Paulrasu underlined the rich ancient traditions pertaining to agriculture and horticulture in the state and expressed the hope that the week-long conference would come out with ideas to help farmers and horticulturists.

Shoolini University Chancellor P.K. Khosla said India has come a long way from severe shortage of food grains to a country not only self-sufficient but also a food grains exporting country.

Vice Chancellor Atul Khosla said museums spark inspiration, and inspiration leads to positive changes.

“Preserving our heritage is crucial. Innovation is not limited to urban areas and farmers also drive innovation.”

AIMA President Claus Kropp, who attended the inaugural session online, said agriculture is a living tradition, embodying the knowledge of rural India and also bridging the gap between consumers and farmers.

Prof Rajeshwer S. Chandel, Vice-Chancellor of Dr. Yashwant Singh Parmar University of Horticulture and Forestry (UHF) Nauni, highlighted the contribution of Himachal Pradesh in the field of horticulture and said the deliberations would benefit the farmers and agriculturists.

Over 70 delegates from different parts of the country and abroad are participating in the week-long event.

The prestigious global event will continue at Shoolini University till Sunday and will then move to Punjab Agriculture University in Ludhiana.

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