Farmers and farm women in large number thronged the Kisan Mela, organized at Dr DR Bhumbla Regional Research Station, Ballowal Saunkhri today. Participating farmers visited stalls, saw field demonstrations, discussed their agriculture related problems with PAU experts, purchased quality seeds and farm publications.
The mela was based on the theme “AAO KHETI KHARCH GHATAIYE, VADHU PANI KHAAD NA PAYIYE” which lays emphasis on the judicious use of soil-water resources for better financial gains and conservation of environment.
Narinder Singh Shergill, Chairman, Milkfed, Punjab, was the chief guest on the occasion. Kisan Melas are a big success because of the availability of improved seeds, farm literature, latest agricultural machinery and fresh home made products, he said.
He observed that the establishment of College of Agriculture at this place will not only provide quality agricultural education to students of the region, but will also lead to economic development of this region.
In his presidential remarks, Dr SS Gosal, Vice-Chancellor of Punjab Agricultural University, called upon the visiting farmers to opt for hybrid seeds developed after years of research, use resources carefully, adopt subsidiary occupations, focus on co-operative marketing and mechanization, and make use of expertise of PAU scientists.
He impressed upon the optimal maintenance of soil quality as it in turn impacts in a major way the standard of their living. He endorsed the concept of organic farming, drip irrigation, green manure usage and highlighted the significance of solar system for the generation of electricity.
He further added that crop varieties that mature quickly and give a good produce should be used more frequently to develop a truly prosperous Punjab.While welcoming the dignitaries, farmers and the farm women, Dr G S Buttar, Director of Extension Education, PAU, said that the Kisan Melas provide a platform for farmers-scientists interaction.
Dr Buttar exhorted the farmers to make a careful use of the resources and manage small land holdings effectively, set up kitchen gardens and promote organic farming for better financial gains.
Dr Ajmer Singh Dhatt, Director of Research, PAU said that the Regional Research Centre, Ballowal Saunkhri, having completed 40 years, has made a significant progress during the last few years. The scenic beauty and the clean environment of this place is a big attraction to one and all.
He affirmed that the university is now reprioritizing its research in perspective of new challenges faced by the Punjab Agriculture with particular emphasis on changing climatic conditions, depleting water resources and rising cost of cultivation etc.
He said that the research conducted by the university experts is based on improving the nutrient value of the farm produce. New varieties of wheat (PBWRS1 for combating diabetes), Maize and salad (hybrid), potatoes, dragon fruit, apple, guava, green fodder, eggplant, coriander, and beans are significant endeavours in this direction.
He encouraged the farmers to go for wine manufacturing from honey and other time-tested recommendations.Progressive farmers S. Amandeep, S. Gurcharan Singh Bhullar, Sh. Naresh Kumar, Sh Anant Ram and Sh Gurdeep Ram were also awarded at the function.
During the mela, BSc Agriculture students were honoured for giving scintillating performances in Shabad gayan, Bhangra, and folk song. About 85 stalls were set up by different departments of PAU, self-help groups and various firms including manufacturers of agricultural machinery.
Dr Manmohanjit Singh, Director, RRS Ballowal Saunkhri, proposed the vote of thanks and shed light on the activities carried out at RRS, Ballowal Saunkhri. The gram panchayats of nearby villages honored the Director, Dr. Manmohanjit Singh at this occasion.
Stage was conducted by Dr. Tajinder Singh Riar and Dr. Gurwinder Singh.On this occasion Dr. Kiranjot Kaur, Dean, College of Community Science, Sh. Satnam Singh Jalalpur, Chairman, District Planning Commission, Nawanshahr, Sh. Ashok Kataria, Member AAP were also present.
More and more kisan melas should be organized from time to time as it is during these gatherings that the knowledge of farmers is updated on newly released crop varieties and agricultural technologies. At the end, Dr. Satbir Singh Gosal, Vice-Chancellor inaugurated the Kisan Sewa Kendra at Ballowal Saunkhri.