Udupi, Feb 15, 2015: Speaking after inaugurating the ’Farmers’ Conference-2015’ followed by ’Krishi Mela’ and farmers awareness workshop organised by Udupi District Krishika Sangha, Agricultural University, Shivamogga Vice Chancellor Dr C Vasudevappa opined that farming community should think in terms of overcoming problems pertaining to cultivation activities, in order to augment production of agricultural growths.
He went to say that post independence era witnessed nearly 80 per cent of people in the country engaged in farming. Now however, percentage has drastically dropped to 50 per cent. The decrease in farming area would massively affect food production in the country. Especially small landholders in the farming sector. However, owing to meager income, most farmers are migrating to urban areas in search of livelihood.
The VC also said production of food grains at present is 265 million tonne. The problems of price deflation, shortage of agriculture labourers, scarcity of water has intensified the troubles of cultivation.Stating that farmers need awareness over sophisticated farming technologies, he said agriculture, when taken up in large scale, would prove profitable. The intensive cultivation and integrated farming system should be incorporated. The farmers should incorporate changes in the farming system.
Mechanisation should be emphasised. Farmers association and agricultural universities should organise demonstrations over superior breeds, fertilisers, transplantation process, processing and market prices. He opined cooperative farming system should be introduced.
Emphasizing mixed farming, the vice chancellor added plantation crop could be a substitute crop that can be taken up for mixed farming. The farmers should go for drip and sprinkler irrigation. The drip and sprinkler irrigation would enable cultivation also during summer. Besides skill development programme should be introduced. He added diploma course in agriculture is introduced for youths to make them aware about the techniques involved in agriculture. The course is already introduced in Brahmavar and shortly would be introduced in Chikkamagaluru. The issue of lateral entry for the students who secure diplomas to the agricultural universities is also being deliberated, he added.
In his keynote, Akashavani Mangaluru, Krishiranga programme, Coordinator T S Shyam Prasad lamented service sector, real estate business dominate the economic growth of the country as against agriculture sector, which was the main occupation of the country. The 7.4 GDP growth recorded for 2014-15 is dominated mainly by real estate and service sector. Wild animal menace, price, pest problem and lack of security has compelled farmers to distant themselves as well as their children from agriculture. He called upon farmers to go for other activities like poultry farming, fishing and compost culture besides agriculture to make the agriculture profitable. Farmers have got a better view of the sector from this Farmers conference.