15th March, 2019, New Delhi
Dr. Trilochan Mohapatra, Secretary (DARE) & DG (ICAR) inaugurated the “54th Annual Group Meeting of ICAR-AICRP on Pearl Millet” at Dr. B.P. Pal Auditorium, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Delhi today. The Meeting will be organized from 15th to 17th March, 2019.
Dr. Mohapatra, in his inaugural address emphasized that the contributions made in the research works by each and every individual is important. He also urged the scientists and researchers to give the due importance to the contributions made by their co-workers.
The Director General urged the scientists from various agricultural and allied sciences’ backgrounds to maintain a proper record of their valuable researches by promptly documenting them. He said that this would be helpful to pass on their research expertise to the young researchers and scientists for understanding the various issues related to their particular fields promptly and effectively.
He stressed on the phenomenal changes in the climatic conditions in the country. He said that the scientists must come out with prompt actions that can be taken in order to maintain and retain the nutritional values of the crops more efficiently and effectively. The scientists and experts must focus on enhancing the productivity of crops.
Dr. Mohapatra urged the young scientists to gain knowledge from the experiences of their senior scientists and then start their action plans in the designated directions. He also said that the there is a plenty of opportunities that can be utilized in the fields of research works.
Dr. A.K. Singh, DDG (Agricultural Extension) & Director, IARI highlighted that till date, around 16 hybrids/composites of Bajra (Pearl Millet) have been developed. He said that this is the sole responsibility and duty also of the scientists and researchers to maintain the quality of the crop. He said that for this purpose, the designated scientists and farmers should also maintain the quality of the storage system of the pearl millet. This, he said, will result in retaining the natural nutritional values of the crop.
Dr. R.B. Singh, Former President, NAAS said the Pearl Millet as the real pearl for the farmers of the country. He stressed that the malnutrition is one of the major problems of the country and requires prompt attention to address it. He said nutrient rich millet is necessary for having a good and healthier life. Dr. Singh also applauded the ICAR-AICRP’s efforts and initiatives for the promotion of the crop.
Dr. C. Tara Satyavathi, Project Coordinator, ICAR-AICRP on Pearl Millet, Jodhpur highlighted the main nutritional values of Millet and its health-related advantages. Dr. Satyavathi said the crop occupies 7.4 million ha with an average production of 9.13 million tonnes and productivity of 1237 kg/ha during the Year - 2017-18 (Directorate of Millets Development, 2019 Project Coordinator Review, 2019). She highlighted that the crop grown in the country during the rainy (Kharif) season (June/July-September/October) is also cultivated during the summer season (February-May) in the parts of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh and during the post-rainy (Rabi) season (November-February) at a small scale in Maharashtra and Gujarat.
She said that apart from the conductance of mandated coordinated multi-location trials and evaluation of test entries, the ICAR-AICRP on Pearl Millet is committed to pearl millet improvement through research, technology generation and transfer. Dr. Satyavathi highlighted that Pearl Millet is one of the first crops where MAS strategies and tools have been applied for developing the “Improved HHB - 67".
She underlined that the ICAR-AICRP on Pearl Millet has been actively collaborating as the technology and knowledge partner in several new research initiatives namely UNEP-GEF Project, Millet Mission by NFSM, Niche Area of Excellence (NAE) Programme from ICAR, ICAR-BMGF Project, etc.
(Source: Directorate of Knowledge Management in Agriculture, New Delhi)