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BackNational Workshop on ‘Organic/ Natural farming and cow based economy’ under Unnat Bharat Abhiyan (UBA) held at ICAR-Central Sheep & Wool Research Institute, Avikanagar

A three day National Workshop on ‘Organic/Natural farming and cow based economy’ under the umbrella of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan (UBA) was held at ICAR-Central Sheep & Wool Research Institute (CSWRI), Avikanagar from 26 to 28 February, 2016. The workshop was sponsored by Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), New Delhi and co-organized by Rajasthan State Goshala Federation (RSGF). At the onset, Dr. S.M.K. Naqvi, Chairman, Organizing Committee and Director, ICAR-CSWRI welcomed the dignitaries and participants and highlighted the activities of the Institute in the area of natural farming. Dr. Arun Kumar, Organizing Secretary welcomed the dignitaries and participants and briefed about the activities of the workshop. The workshop was inaugurated by Dr. N.S. Rathore, Deputy Director General (Agricultural Education), Indian Council of Agricultural Research, New Delhi. Dr. Rathore highlighted the manifold increase in agricultural production in the country in last 50 years. He expressed utmost concern over the increasing practice of excessive use of pesticides in agriculture and emphasized the importance and need of adopting natural and organic farming to combat this menace. He informed the house that farmers in Rajasthan faces drought every alternate year, yet the cases of suicide is very rare as livestock farming is an integral part of agriculture here. He told that one of the important aims of the workshop is to spread awareness about natural farming alongside cow rearing. Sh. Hridey Nath Singh, Patron of UBA, in his address during the inaugural session informed that in India, a truly agrarian country, cow was once considered to be a property of the household. He stressed the need of practicing natural farming through cow based agriculture and also highlighted the various utilities of different produces from cow farming. Sh. Kan Singh Nirvan, RSGF gave an overview of the workshop. Sh. Shyam Bihari Gupta, UBA emphasized the need of strengthening village based economy through cow based natural farming to tackle the issues of migration of people to the cities, increasing pollution, pesticide residues in food etc.  Sh. Krishen Kumar Jakhar, core member of UBA team shared his experiences and benefits from cow based natural farming.  Dr. M.B. Chetty, ADG (HRD), ICAR also attended the inaugural session.

The workshop conducted technical sessions on natural farming, water saving agricultural practices, pest management, cow farming, biogas and cow based economy in which more than 30 presentations were made by experts, entrepreneurs and progressive farmers. Progressive farmers shared their unique experiences in cow based natural farming and encouraged others to adopt natural farming. The workshop was addressed by Sh. Gopal Upadhyay, Thakur Dharmpal Singh, Shyam Bihari Gupta, Suresh Pathak, Kan Singh Nirvan, Mrs. Sushma Singh, Hridey Nath Singh, Mukund Deo Agrawal and others, outlining the necessity of cow based natural and organic farming. They emphasized that it will help to transform the village economy and protect the farmers from the impact of natural calamities on agriculture. The workshop envisaged establishment of atleast 25 Organic farming centres, each comprising of a cluster of villages. The centres will engage themselves in producing 4-6 farmer-scientists who will propagate the idea of Unnat Bharat Abhiyan through adoption of cow based natural farming. The resources of the village will be utilized in the village itself to generate income and better livelihood for farming community.  

More than 250 progressive farmers, scientists and experts from different states participated in the workshop. The participants were awarded with participation certificate from ICAR-CSWRI, Avikanagar. The dignitaries and participants were also taken for a visit to various sheep and goat sectors and shown the organic agriculture being undertaken by the Institute.

Mr. Avdesh Sharma, Up-Zila Pramukh, Tonk District was the chief guest during concluding session. He drew attention of all towards gradual deterioration in the condition and number of cows in the country and urged the farmers to take up natural and organic farming alongside rearing of cows. Dr. S.M.K. Naqvi, Director, ICAR-CSWRI hailed the successful organization of the National Workshop and warned against the danger from use of pesticides. He reiterated the immediate need of shifting towards cow based natural farming. Distinguished guest Sh. Ravi Kumar Jain and Krishen Kumar Jakhar also addressed the participants. Dr. Arun Kumar, Organizing Secretary & Head, Division of Animal Genetics & Breeding proposed the vote of thanks to one and all. Sh. Kan Singh Nirvan coordinated the event.