Baramulla, Oct 06: In a momentous agricultural development, Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha inaugurated the Rabi Campaign for the sowing of Rabi Crops, underscoring the administration's unwavering commitment to revolutionise farming practices.
During the inauguration ceremony held at the Aspirational Block Singhpora in Baramulla district as part of Sankalp Saptaah, Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha lauded the transformative shift witnessed during the previous Rabi season, notably the "yellow revolution" in the Kashmir Division, where an impressive 1.4 lakh hectares were brought under mustard cultivation.
Highlighting the remarkable surge in Rabi cropping intensity, the Lt. Governor revealed that farmers reaped the rewards by harvesting a staggering 2027 metric tons of Rabi Crops in the year 2022-23, contributing to an estimated revenue of Rs. 5000 Crore.
Expressing unwavering confidence in the agriculture sector's exponential growth, Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha emphasised its pivotal role in realizing the vision of "Viksit Bharat."
The Lt. Governor, in his address, extended warm felicitations to the farming community and issued directives to officials, stressing the critical importance of ensuring the timely provision of essential inputs, fertilizers, and the facilitation of innovative technologies to bolster production, ultimately leading to self-sufficiency in oilseeds and pulses.
Lauding the commendable efforts of the Union Territory (UT) administration, the Lt. Governor underlined their commitment to bring about a paradigm shift in Rabi crop cultivation. He noted that during the previous Rabi season, the Kashmir Division witnessed the groundbreaking "yellow revolution," with an expansive 1.4 Lakh hectares dedicated to mustard cultivation, a marked departure from the previous norm where approximately 70 per cent of cultivable land remained fallow during the Rabi season.
The Lt. Governor went on to highlight the rapid increase in Rabi cropping intensity within the Kashmir Division. In the year 2022-23, farmers achieved a record harvest of 2027 metric tons of Rabi Crops, yielding an estimated revenue of Rs. 5000 Crore.
"This is a golden era for the agriculture and allied sectors. I am confident that the exponential growth in the agriculture sector will contribute significantly to the realization of the 'Viksit Bharat' vision," the Lt. Governor said.
Acknowledging the profound impact of the Holistic Agriculture Development Program (HADP) on the agriculture sector, Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha underscored the program's mission to encourage J&K's farmers to embrace Agri Stack. This approach allows them to leverage innovative and sustainable solutions tailored to their specific needs.
The Lt. Governor also revealed that a sustainable mechanism is being developed through technological interventions to provide doorstep delivery of services and vital information to farmers.
Meanwhile, Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha issued a directive for officials to make dedicated efforts to establish Primary Agriculture Credit Societies (PACS) in every panchayat. He emphasized the immense potential of the cooperative sector for agricultural growth and prosperity. The penetration of PACS and Farmer Producer Organizations at the grassroots level, he noted, would bring stability and sustainability to production while adding value to the Agriculture and Allied Sector.
Lt. Governor Manoj Sinha praised the pivotal role played by training and capacity-building programs in increasing farm productivity. He urged officials to leave no farmer behind and ensure that all farmers are registered on the Daksh portal, providing them with every possible assistance and benefit.
"I am confident that, with the hard work of farmers, the extension of scientific knowledge and technologies, tapping the potential of diversification and intercropping, and establishing robust linkages for end-to-end operations, from sowing to selling, the J&K UT will emerge as the number one region in terms of farmer’s income within the next 4 years," he said.
The Lt. Governor officially inaugurated a Custom Hiring Centre and presented sanction letters to beneficiaries under various schemes. He also toured stalls set up by farmers, agri-entrepreneurs, and government departments.
Progressive farmers took the opportunity to share their success stories and expressed their gratitude to the administration for its unwavering support and assistance.
Among others present included Dr Nazir Ahmed Ganai, Vice Chancellor SKUAST Kashmir; Shailender Kumar, Principal Secretary Agriculture Production Department; Dr. Mandeep Kumar Bhandari, Principal Secretary to Lt. Governor; Vijay Bidhuri, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir; Dr Syed Sehrish Asgar, Deputy Commissioner Baramulla; Chowdhary Mohammad Iqbal, Director Agriculture Kashmir; PRI members, senior officers.