12th February 2013, New Delhi
“The agrobiodiversity plays a vital role in sustainable growth and development and we should work for efficient use of this natural and valuable resource” said Shri Tariq Anwar, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, Government of India. He was inaugurating the “Global Consultation on Use and Management of Agrobiodiversity for Sustainable Food Security” (12-14 February, 2013) at New Delhi here today. While elaborating upon the efforts made by ICAR in conservation of agrobiodiversity, he suggested utilization of this valuable resource for the agricultural growth, holistic development and sustainable food security. He hoped that the global consultation would be able to identify areas of common interest at global scale to move further in this direction.
In his presidential address, Dr. Charan Das Mahant, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food Processing Industries, Government of India expressed satisfaction on the partnership and cooperation between ICAR and other international organizations to protect the agrobiodiversity and hoped that deliberations will help in conservation of genetic resources worldwide. Dr. Mahant also highlighted the important role of India in conservation and protection of agrobiodiversity.
Dr. S. Ayyappan, Secretary, DARE and Director General, ICAR emphasized upon efficient use of genetic resources in providing food and nutrition to global population. He also urged to provide support the custodian farmers for conservation of biodiversity. Dr. Ayyappan also briefed the audience regarding the Indian National Gene Bank that conserve about 0.4 million accessions belonging to around 1800 species.
Dr. Emile Frison, Director General, Bioversity International, Rome in his special remark emphasized on South-South cooperation for collaborative research, technology transfer, capacity building and sharing of expertise for sustainable food production. He urged to listen and learn from the farmers to protect biodiversity in the region. Dr. Frison also appreciated the ICAR for valuable partnership on conservation of genetic resources.
On this occasion, Dr. R.S. Paroda, Chairman, Farmers’ Commission, Haryana and Executive Secretary, APAARI; Dr. R.B. Singh, President, NAAS and Dr. P.N. Mathur, South Asia Coordinator, Bioversity International also presented their valuable remarks.
Earlier, Dr. K.C. Bansal, Director, NBPGR welcomed the dignitaries and briefed the gathering about the consultation.
The 3-day programme is being jointly organized by the ICAR and Bioversity International with support from ITPGRFA, FAO, ICRISAT, ICARDA and APAARI. About 55 international participants from 32 countries are participating in this global consultation in addition to 60 Indian national participants. A special meeting is being convened in which custodian farmers are participating.
Dr. D.C. Bhandari, Head, Exploration Division, NBPGR proposed the vote of thanks.
(Source: NAIP Mass Media Project, DKMA, ICAR)