The Department of Horticulture district Ramban on Friday organised a one day mega farmers’ awareness cum interaction programme at tehsil Ukhral.Director Horticulture Jammu, Ram Savak presided over the camp in presence of Chief Horticulture Officer Ramban, Anil Kumar Gorkha; Tehsildar Ukhral, DLSMS (Pomology), Pardeep Gupta; Farm Manager (ACHD), Virinder Kumar; HDO, Rajesh Gupta.
The PRIs and a large number of farmers including women of adjoining Panchayats participated in the Camp..Addressing the farmers/fruit growers, the Director Horticulture impressed upon them to focus on post harvest management of fruit crops by establishing processing units for fruit processing/ fruit drying/ spices preparation etc with the assistance of the department under the PMFME scheme.
“It is a landmark initiative of Aatmannirbhar Bharat Abhiyan for the value addition of fruit products which will not only reduce post harvest losses but also provide employment opportunities to the rural youth,” he added.
The Director encouraged Women Farmers to form their Farmers Club/ FPOs / Self Help Groups to establish and run processing units at community level. He also instructed the field functionaries to organise training programmes on value addition of fruit crops.
Further, the Director said that the Department of Horticulture was providing adequate assistance to farmers and they should take all the benefits of the centrally and UT sponsored schemes viz MIDH, PMKSY, UT CAPEX, etc of the department.
He also urged farmers to take the benefits of the Agriculture Infrastructure Fund which aims at providing a financing facility through interest subvention and credit guarantee support on loans for creation of post harvest management infrastructure and community farming assets.
Earlier, Chief Horticulture Officer Ramban welcomed the Director Horticulture and apprised him about the works going on in the field under different departmental schemes. He briefed farmers about the developmental schemes of the department and incentives being provided for upliftment of their socio economic status.
Later, the Director handed over 13 sanctions letters to the beneficiaries for establishment of on-farm handling units, Vermicompost units and water harvesting structures under different departmental schemes.