Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur said that the state government was committed to make Himachal Pradesh a natural farming state by encouraging non-chemical and natural farming by adopting bio-pesticides and bio- insecticides etc. He was interacting with Padam Shri Subhash Palekar who called on him here today.The Chief Minister said that state government was providing subsidy of 50 percent with maximum limit of Rs. 25,000 for purchase of cows of indigenous breed to farmers engaged in natural farming. This will not only increase the cattle wealth of the famers but also help in promoting natural farming.Jai Ram Thakur said that state government was endeavouring to double the farmer’s income by 2022 and ‘Prakritik Kheti Khushhal Kisan Yojna' would go a long way in this direction as organic products would not only fetch remunerative prices to the farmers but would also provide chemical free fruits, vegetables and other eatable articles to the consumers.He said that a workshop would be organized for the MLAs to sensitize them about the benefits of adopting natural farming so that they could motivate farmers of their respective areas to go for natural farming. He said that agriculture department may also consider for developing ‘Beej Grams’ under which selected villages could be developed as models for producing quality natural seeds of various crops and fruits.
Jai Ram Thakur said that department should regularly organize awareness camps regarding natural farming particularly in apple growing areas so that farmers could be pursued to go for organic farming instead of depending on heavily chemical fertilizers. He said that strict action would be taken against those involved in marketing and selling of unauthorized pesticides and insecticides.The Chief Minister also laid stress on field visits of the progressive farmers to the orchards of the farmers who have already adopted natural farming as this would motivate others to adopt natural farming.Subhash Palekar said that natural farming would not only help in doubling the farm income but would also go a long way in checking the dreaded diseases due to excessive use of chemical fertilizers.Additional Chief Secretary Dr. Shrikant Baldi, Principal Secretary, Agriculture Onkar Sharma and other senior officers were also present on the occasion among others.