Indian Chamber of Commerce organizes 2-days consultative meeting on Agriculture & Horticulture in the North East

Indian Chamber of Commerce organizes 2-days consultative meeting on Agriculture & Horticulture in the North East

Shillong, Feb. 16: The program interface between State Government and Scientific community. Mr. Manoj Agarwal Chairman of ICC NER Agriculture, Horticulture and Food Processing Committee said that Agriculture provides livelihood support to 70 % of North East region’s population. It produces only 1.5 % of country’s food grain production and continues to be a net importer of food grains even for its own consumption.

M. Iboyaima Meitei Advisor of Horticulture, North Eastern Council said that NER is endowed with 33% of country’s water resources. It receives annual rainfall ranging from 2,480 mm to 6,350 mm. In order to have sustainable agriculture and horticulture, strategic planning and implementation is necessary to develop agriculture and make region marginally, if not significantly, surplus in food production by integrating research, extension and education duly supported by a time bound reforms in land tenure system in each State.

Harnessing agricultural potential would generate surplus to support the secondary sector, create demand for goods in the rural areas, increase disposable income that could enhance purchasing power of some 33 million people and bring socio-economic development.

Special Guest at the program Mr. Som Kamei (IPoS), Advisor, Planning, North Eastern Council stated that Agricultural development strategy has to be evolved depending on resources, conditions and people’s needs and priorities. Private sector participation can provide additional resources and create necessary environment to generate job opportunities, better utilization of resources and enhance credit flow impacting directly on farm sector development.

With appropriately defined targets, clear outcomes, strategies and coordinated planning, the NER can become increasingly self-reliant in food output. Effective computer-based monitoring and management information system can facilitate timely implementation of programs with improved quality and service delivery that can avoid cost and time over runs and yield envisioned results.

Ishantor Sobhapandit, Regional Director of Indian Chamber of Commerce, North Eastern Region highlighted the importance of export-based agriculture. Senior Government officials from all the North Eastern States from Agriculture and Horticulture department participated along with the nationally and international scientist from different parts of the country.

The 2-day discussions and deliberations resulted in many fruitful recommendations to meet the new challenges and take North East horticulture to next level.