Horticulture | For Horticulture Govt Set Up High-power Vision Group.

The Karnataka State government has constituted a high-power Vision Group on Horticulture, Agriculture and Food Processing and this group is headed by agricultural scientist M.S. Swaminathan. It has also constituted a working group for drafting a micro irrigation policy.

The Vision Group was announced by Chief Minister Siddaramaiah during the presentation of the 2015-16 budget in the Assembly, the State government has issued a formal notification constituting the Vision Group and identifying its members only now. Minister of State for Agriculture Krishna Byre Gowda will be the vice-chairman of the Vision Group.

Apart from the Director-General of International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics, Hyderabad, the Director of the Indian Institute of Management, the Director of the Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, the former Chairman of Unique Identification Authority of India Nandan Nilekani, the former Director-General of Indian Council of Agricultural Research R.S. Paroda, the former Director of the Indian Agricultural Research Institute S.A. Patil, and M.R. Srinivasamurthy, agricultural scientist, and the former Deputy Director-General of International Crops Research Institute for Semi-Arid Tropics C.L. Lakshmipathi Gowda will be members.

Principal Secretary, Agriculture Department, will be the member-secretary.

The Vision Group has been mandated to identify areas eligible for study of development in the agriculture and horticulture sectors, development of suitable new technologies for the two segments to help improve yield and reduce cost of cultivation, to bridge the gap between laboratory and land in respect to transfer of technology.

The Vision Group has been asked to recommend steps to give thrust to processing and marketing of agriculture and horticulture produce. The sources said that in line with the announcement made by Mr. Siddaramaiah in the budget for framing a micro irrigation policy for ensuring efficient use of water and preserving micro nutrients in soil, a notification has been issued constituting a working group headed by Development Commissioner and Additional Chief Secretary.

The State government is of the view that one way of ensuring the efficient use of water was to expand the area under micro irrigation using drip and sprinkler irrigation to economise the use of water and increase productivity. Through micro irrigation practices, the problem of waterlogging and soil salinity in the canal command areas could also be tackled effectively.

Source: http://www.thehindu.com/