The second State Coordination Committee (SCC) Meeting for doubling farmers’ income in West Bengal was held under the Chairmanship of Dr. D. D. Patra, Vice- Chancellor, Bidhan Cnandra Krishi Viswavidyalaya (BCKV), Mohanpur, Nadia, West Bengal at ICAR- Agricultural Technology Application Research Institute (ATARI), Kolkata, Salt Lake, Kolkata on 8th August 2017.
At the outset, Dr. S.S. Singh, Director, ICAR- ATARI, Kolkata welcomed all the Hon’ble members of the Coordination Committee, the representatives of different organisations, and the Scientists of ICAR- ATARI, Kolkata. After self- introduction by all the members and the participants, Dr. S.S. Singh, Director, ICAR- ATARI, Kolkata highlighted in brief about the purpose of the meeting and making a complete document considering the area specific technology modules along with all possible combinations for doubling income depending on various agro-ecological as well as different socio-economic conditions of the farming community in West Bengal. He underlined on scope of rice cultivation, horticultural crops, resource conservation technologies, integrated farming system (IFS), market linked (e-mundi) agri-business, promotion of cop insurance scheme, skill development programme etc.
Dr. D. D. Patra, Vice- Chancellor, BCKV, Mohanpur, Nadia, West Bengal emphasized on mainly two strategies for doubling the farmers’ incomes by increasing the productivity of agriculture produces including livestock and fisheries as well as decreasing the cost of production. He suggested for the promotion of high value crops like strawberry, capsicum, spices like turmeric, ginger etc., value added products along with the diversification of crops. Dr. D. D. Patra emphasized on efficient use of inputs, multitier cropping system and minimizing the post-harvest losses. He also suggested for the restructuring of the marketing system of the agricultural commodities to provide minimum support price to the farmers. He urged to take the whole programme in a mission mode. He said on the development of agro-ecological zone specific, crop specific and the farmer centric technological modules in view of doubling the farmers’ income by March 2022 in West Bengal.
Dr. Chirantan Chattopadhyay, Vice- Chancellor, UBKV, Cooch Behar, West Bengal raised the issue of organizing the farmers from unorganized form to organized form in agriculture sector. He pointed out the tremendous market fluctuation of producer’s price of agriculture produces and thus evolving some mechanisms to protect the farmers. He said to fix some base line/ base index for preparing the document for doubling farmers’ income in West Bengal by 2022. Dr. Chattopadhyay suggested for educating the farmers to be become economist/ market concerned/ business oriented. He emphasize on tremendous scope of agro- food industries, bee keeping and honey production, silk production, mushroom production, livestock products and fishes. He stressed upon the availability of quality seed, utilization of rice fallow area, climate resilient agricultural system, integrated pest management (IPM) etc. He urged that due emphasis should be extended to promote fish sector in North Bengal as it has been given in South Bengal.
Prof. Arunasis Goswami, Director of Research, Extension and Farm, West Bengal University of Animal and Fishery Sciences (WBUAFS), Belgachia, Kolkata suggested for undertaking Zone/Region specific programme for livestock improvement. He discussed on the potential of livestock farming and fisheries in West Bengal in the light of doubling the farmers’ incomes by March 2022. He emphasized on taking programmes for marginal and land less farmers.
The meeting was concluded with the remarks made by the hon’ble Vice- Chancellor, BCKV, Mohanpur, Nadia, West Bengal and the Chairman of the Coordination Committee, Dr. D. D. Patra. The meeting ended with a vote of thanks.
Vice-Chancellor of State Agricultural Universities, Directors of ICAR Institutes and Senior Officials of State Government Departments, Scientists of ICAR- ATARI, Kolkata attended the meeting.
(Source: ICAR-ATARI, Kolkata)