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Convocation of CSK Agriculture University Palampur held Crop diversification given top priority-Chief Minister


cmDharmshala(arvind Sharma ) 13 November- Smt. Urmila Singh, Governor who is also the
Chancellor of CSK H.P. Agriculture University, Palampur presided over
the 12th Convocation of the University today. Shri Virbhadra Singh,
Chief Minister was the Chief Guest on the occasion. The Governor and
Chief Minister awarded Masters’ and Doctoral Degrees, Certificates of
Honour and Gold Medals to 317 meritorious students present on the
occasion out of the total 686 students.
In her presidential address, Smt. Urmila Singh urged the students to
keep themselves updated with latest knowledge besides upgrading their
skills in order to face all kinds of upcoming challenges effectively
in their profession. She said that in order to excel in the field,
they should be experts of their subjects. She said that students
should be confident and strive to develop a responsible attitude
towards their profession and society as well so that we could have
responsible and good future citizens.
The Governor said that research was very vital for the growth of
agriculture sector and efforts should be made to strengthen this area
and intensive research should be conducted for developing new
varieties of crops suitable to different climatic conditions besides
new techniques helpful for farmers. She said that there was a vast
scope for crop diversification and off-season vegetables in the State
and the University had significantly contributed towards strengthening
the socio-economic standards of the farming community.
Felicitating all the degree recipients on the occasion, Smt Singh
urged them to serve the State and Country with dedication through the
profession and field they choose to adopt in future. Youth were nation
builders in real sense and they play an important role in building a
strong and vibrant nation, she added.
She also released a monograph on high precision farming on the occasion.
Chief Minister Shri Virbhadra Singh while speaking on the occasion
said that there was a need to develop region specific vegetable
varieties for optimum production with low input. Main focus should be
on growing vegetable crops, which fetch high market price nationally
and internationally.
He said that diversification of crops has been the top priority of our
Government Pand as consequence of implementing policies we have been
able to increase the area under vegetable crops including off-season
vegetables to about 68000 hectares with a production of 13.56 lakh
metric tonnes.  This has brought economic revolution in rural area, he
added.
Shri Virbhadra Singh said the growth of vegetable production and
horticultural crops of the State was above national average and the
State was producing more food grains than its requirement due to
improved technologies. The fast adoption of new technologies like
polyhouse farming and organic agriculture has further multiplied
visibility of the State at the national level, he said. A large number
of farmers have come forward to adopt vegetable production and there
was need to develop region specific vegetable varieties for optimum
production with low input. Main focus should be on growing vegetable
crops, which fetch high market price nationally and internationally
suggested the Chief Minister.
The Chief Minister said that water harvesting was another priority
area of the Government and this should be the focus area for the
scientists. The government had accorded high priority to the holistic
and sustainable development of rainfed areas through integrated
watershed development approach.  The State had also come out with
Water Policy as water would be the scarcest resource in the near
future, he added.
He advised the scientists to accelerate their efforts for crop
improvement, natural resource management, crop production, crop
protection, post harvest technology, plant biotechnology and give
impetus to strategic research with precision.
He said about 70 per cent farm operations were being performed by
women in the State and  the State had taken a lead by organizing them
to self help groups besides linking them with the bank-credit.
He said that the government had opened educational institutions up to
far-flung areas so that children could be able to excel in all
competitions and serve the Country. He expressed happiness that this
University was the most peaceful in the State.
 “I am not against the students activities in the higher centres of
learning provided that they adhere to discipline and not resort in
mischiefs” he said. The Government would ensure that even the teachers
carry out their responsibilities in a dignified manner and not indulge
in politics and the Government would soon come out with a legislation
to debar teachers to participate in politics.
Earlier, the Chief Minister inaugurated Rs. 86 Lakh Solid Waste
Management project at Surad in GP Lohana in Palampur.
He also laid foundation stone of foreign registration office at
Dharamshala to be constructed at a cost of Rs. 1.60 crore.
Earlier, Dr. K.K. Katoch, Vice Chancellor CSK University of
Agriculture, welcomed and honoured the Governor and Chief Minister and
detailed about the activities being undertaken by the University. He
said that the concepts of ‘Earn while you learn’ and ‘Experimental
learning’ and ‘Plant Clinics’ have been introduced in the course
curricula of the undergraduate programmes. He thanked the Chief
Minister for granting additional financial aid to the University
 Shri B.B.L. Butail, Speaker, HP Vidhan Sabha, Shri Sujan Singh
Pathania  Agriculture Minister, Shri Sudhir Sharma, Urban Development
and Housing Minister, Shri Jagjeevan Pal, Chief Parliamentary
Secretary, Shri Yadvendra Goma, MLA, Shri Kewal Singh Pathania,
Vice-Chairman Forest Corporation Sh Gokul Butail, Advisor IT to
Government of Himachal Pradesh, Shri Ratan Gautam, Registrar of CSK
University of Agriculture, Senior scientists,  Faculty members, staff
and Students of the University were present on the occasion.
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