Samba Krishi Vigyan Kendra of Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences & Technology - Jammu celebrated “World Soil Day 2023” witnessing participation of more than 200 farmers. The theme for World Soil Day 2023 is “Soil and Water: A Source of Life".
The event was held under the leadership of Professor. B.N. Tripathi, Vice-Chancellor, SKUAST-Jammu, instructions of Professor S. K. Gupta Director Extension, SKUAST-J and the supervision of Dr. Sanjay Khajuria, Chief scientist & Head, KVK Samba.
N.S Jamwal, Director Command Area Development Jammu was the Chief Guest, while Balwan Singh, Vice Chairman DDC Samba was the Guest of Honour, and Dr. Sanjay Khajuria presided over the function.The Chief Scientist & Head, KVK , in his welcome address, emphasized upon the importance of soil in agricultural productivity and expressed concern over the rising soil erosion in the district.
He advised the farmers to use agro forestry techniques to promote soil health. He gave an insight into the importance of millet crops like pearl millet, sorghum millet, little millet, foxtail millet, barnyard millets in our daily diet and their role in maintaining the soil health and fertility.
Further, he emphasized upon the advantages of growing millet crops in kandi region and their suitability in rain fed areas of Samba district. He appraised the farming community about the health benefits of these crops and their demand thereof.
As the GOI, is celebrating 2023 as “International Year of Millets”, so the efforts of the KVK to promote the farming of the millets can be well understood. More than 50 ha area was covered under the millets in District Samba, disclosed Dr. Khajuria.
The Chief Guest, in his address, lauded the efforts of KVK Samba for reaching out to each and every nook and corner of the district. He also stressed to raise awareness of the importance of maintaining healthy ecosystems and human well-being by addressing the growing challenges in soil management, fighting soil-salinization, and increasing soil awareness to improve soil health.
He also told the farmers that such awareness programmes shall be the regular feature for the farming community at village level to make them aware of the balanced use of fertilizers to increase productivity and maintain soil health.
Balwan Singh, Vice Chairman DDC Samba also appreciated the team of KVK Samba for their tireless efforts for enhancement of farmers income under the leadership of Prof. Sanjay Khajuria and also highlighted the importance of World Soil Day, 2023.During the programme, KVK Samba demonstrated an Agriculture drone for the benefit of the farming community.
Interacting with the participants,Prof. Khajuria briefed them about the use of drone in agriculture as it has many distinct advantages such as high field capacity and efficiency, less turnaround time and other field operational delays, wastage reduction of pesticide and fertilizers due to high degree of atomization, water saving due to ultra-low volume spraying technology in comparison to traditional spraying methods, reduction in cost of spraying and fertilizer application in comparison to conventional methods etc. besides reduction of human exposure to hazardous chemicals.
A demonstration on Natural Farming was also conducted on the occasion.Dr. Neerja Sharma, Sr. Scientist, Horticulture KVK Samba elaborated upon the adoption of various Horticulture practices for improving the soil fertility. Dr. Saurav Gupta, Scientist, Entomology, KVK Samba sensitized the participants about the ill effects of injudicious use of pesticides and deteriorating health of soil.
The farmers were also advised to use natural farming practices, adoption of organic farming and other measures of soil conservation. He further informed that World Soil Day is celebrated throughout the globe and ‘it is important for people to understand that our food security depends on healthy soil.’
Dr. Vijay Kumar Sharma Scientist (Animal Sciences) discussed the role of organic waste produced from cattle and poultry sector and its positive and beneficial impact on maintaining the fertility of the soil. Further he emphasized on the utilization of the organic manure for crop production.
Dr. Shalini emphasized the importance of soil in agricultural productivity. She stressed upon that farmers should use organic farming techniques to promote soil health. She also briefed the farmers about the soil sampling techniques. Dr. Amit Mahajan Farm Manager made the farmers aware about the various agronomical practices for improving the soil health.
The programme was made successful with active participation of Sh. Bharat Bhushan, Stenographer (S.Scale) and Sh. Tejinder Singh. The proceedings of the programme was carried out by Dr. Saurav Gupta and Dr. Shalini K. whereas, the end vote of thanks was extended by Dr. Neerja Sharma.