MLA Chenani inaugurates Fruit Show-cum- Kissan Mela at Sudhmahadev
UDHAMPUR, FEBRUARY 28-Member Legislative Assembly Dina Nath Bhagat today inaugurated Fruit Show-Cum-Kissan Mela here at Sudhmahadev of tehsil Chenani ‘
District Development Commissioner Ravinder Kumar, Director Horticulture Anuradha Gupta, General Manager Reserve Bank of India Ashok Kumar Mattoo, Sub-Divisional Magistrate Chenani Davinder Sharma, Chief Horticulture Officer Brij Vallabh Gupta and other district and tehsil officers of the district were also present at the Fruit Show-Cum- Kissan Mela organized by Horticulture Department under MIDH-2017-18.
Around 1000 fruit growers hailing from far-flung areas of the district participated in the Kissan Mela along with their fruit exhibits.
More than, 25 samples including fresh and dried fruits including apple, Pear, Puince, Pomegranate, Persimmon, Lime, Galgal, Walnut, Almond and Peanut besides, value added products such as Jam, Juice, Pickles, Squashes of different fruits were also displayed in the mela to boost the home scale processing of horticulture produce.
Addressing the gathering of farmers, MLA Dina Nath Bhagat said that Government is committed to provide marketing facilities to the farmers at their doorsteps and for this purpose fruit and vegetable markets are being strengthened across the state. He said that there is dire need to optimally exploit the tremendous potential in horticulture, agriculture and allied sectors throughout the State.
The MLA stressed upon mechanization and diversification in farming to make it a profitable business. He said that the Diesel Plough has been introduced for the first time in hilly areas of the State which is showing good results. He said micro-irrigation is being introduced and orchardist have been provided with quality planting material for raising new orchards. He said that the drip-irrigation scheme approved by the Government is underway for execution in favour of fruit growers for increasing productivity.
He said that adequate promotion needs to be given to different schemes launched under horticulture sector so that those living in rural areas could get benefit of the same. He called for a change in the mindset of the unemployed youth towards entrepreneurship and asked them to become job providers instead of job seekers. He said that such exhibitions besides encouraging the youth for setting up their income generating units help in developing cordial relationship between the department and the local people.
The MLA said that the department is trying its best to reach out to all the farmers to assist them in increasing their production. He said that the farmers should boost the horticulture production supplemented by dairying activity for income generation. He further informed that the farmers should adopt organic farming in their fields to produce high value organic produce for maximum returns.
He said that various innovative measures have been put in place to bring maximum area under the ambit of horticulture cultivation to improve the economic conditions of the farmers.
Maintaining that Jammu division has great potential for horticulture produce, the MLA advised the farmers to switchover to cash crops like mangoes, Amla, Litchi, Guava, Lemon, Galgal, Kimb, Quince, olive and strawberry instead of traditional crops, adding that these crops have great demand in the market. He said Government also provides attractive incentives for the promotion of horticulture and people should come in a big way to avail these benefits and to help Government in enhancing the GDP rate of the State.
The MLA informed that the Government proposes to set up a Walnut Board in the State to increase walnut production on scientific lines and boost export. He added that the fruit growers can also produce off season vegetables under protective cultivation by installing poly-green houses and shade net houses in the far-flung areas of the district for which the department is providing facilities for fabrication of poly green structures in the departmental workshop.
Earlier, renowned artists of the district including Ramalo Ram and party presented a colourful cultural programme which was highly applauded by the audience.