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Water management to propel Bihar as 2nd green revolution leader, says Prez Kovind

Kovind said the emphasis on organic farming and creation of an organic corridor along the Ganga river was a welcome measure, as was the focus on updating land records.

india Updated: Nov 09, 2017 19:21 IST
Anil Kumar
Anil Kumar
Hindustan Times, Patna
Ram Nath Kovind,Prez of India,CM Nitish Kumar
Prez Ram Nath Kovind with CM Nitish Kumar, launching Bihar’s 3rd agri roadmap, in Patna on Thursday. (AP Dube/HT photo)

President Ram Nath Kovind, on Thursday, launched Bihar’s Rs 1.54 lakh crore, third agriculture road map (2017-2022), saying proper implementation of measures outlined, particularly those related to water management, could help Bihar emerge leader of the second green revolution.

On his first visit to the state, following his elevation from Patna Raj Bhawan to Rashtrapati Bhawan, Kovind said he was pleased to launch the road map, at Bapu Sabhagar here, in the centenary year of Mahatma Gandhi’s Champaran Satyagrah—a movement for bringing about a change in the lives of farmers.

“I am hopeful that the third road map, since 2008, will bring about a change in the lives of farmers, who continue to grapple with the twin onslaughts of flood and drought. It also prepares the foundation for nation building,” he said.

The President said the previous road maps had helped the state to usher far reaching changes in agricultural practices. “There has been a 90% jump in paddy productivity, from 1.3 ton to 2.5 ton per hectare. Krishi Karman awards in paddy, wheat and maize production is an indicator of the achievements so far,” he said.

Recalling his association with the state, the President said that though he was not a Bihari by birth, he was more of Bihari by virtue of the knowledge and culture he acquired from the place and its luminaries.

“All stakeholders should start working for Bihar’s image building,” he said, apparently prompting that it would help create the platform for pushing one Bihari food item on the plate of every Indian—a target of the government.

Coming to specifics, Kovind said the emphasis on organic farming and creation of organic corridor along the Ganga River can bring about a big change. The focus on updating land records is another good initiative, he added.

“Water management will, however, remain the key,” Kovind said, expressing his satisfaction on the launch of four related schemes, including the stress on ground water recharge and revival of the age-old ‘ahar’ and ‘pyne’ system of irrigation.

The integration of the idea for ‘rainbow revolution’ for improving farm income will provide a sustainable foundation and efforts should be made for improving shelf life of fruits and vegetables. “Sudha Dairy is a living example. Its products have crossed Bihar’s borders and are available in north and eastern states,” the President said.

Chief minister Nitish Kumar said that learning from past experiences the state government was determined to build on it. “We are in the process of completing survey and settlement of land records, which will help in tackling land disputes and pave the way for land consolidation and increasing productivity,” he said.

Kumar said that after achieving milestones in paddy, wheat and maize productivity, the state had set its eye on improving vegetable production. “In order to jump to pole position, from number three position now, we are adopting organic farming and working on providing dedicated power feeders for agriculture and improving rural road connectivity for better market access,” he said.

Bihar Governor Satya Pal Mallik, deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi, agriculture minister Prem Kumar and ministers of remaining 11 departments concerned were also present at the launch function.

First Published: Nov 09, 2017 19:21 IST