Crop Specific Agri Clusters to be developed into areas of high growth

Directs constitution of ‘RKVY Steering Committee’ and ‘Committee on Agro Forestry’ under PS (Agri)
JAMMU, June 17: The Chief Secretary, B V R Subrahmanyam today chaired a meeting of State Food Security Mission Executive Committee to review the achievements under National Food Security Mission (NFSM) with special focus on the progress made in the field of Oil Seeds (OS) and Tree Born Oil Seeds (TBO).
Administrative Secretaries of Finance Department, Agriculture Department, Power Development Department, Social Welfare Department, Forest, Ecology and Environment Department, Rural Development and Panchayati Raj Department, along with Directors of various departments, Vice Chancellor SKUAST-J and representatives of NABARD and Lead Bank, among others participated in the meeting.
Highlighting importance of the Mission in doubling of farmer’s income, the Chief Secretary emphasised on increasing the production of food grains and oils through area expansion and productivity enhancement in a sustainable manner.
The Chief Secretary impressed upon the officers to adopt ‘Cluster Approach’ for assessing the climatic suitability for a crop, developing the required infrastructure, providing necessary ancillary support to farmers, and ensuring proper road connectivity to various markets. “These clusters can further be developed into small areas of excellence for a particular crop”, he added.
The State Food Security Mission Executive Committee under the guidance of the Chief Secretary approved the annual action plan for financial year 2020-21 amounting to Rs 16.53 crores. The Committee approved proposals for undertaking cluster demonstrations, introducing pest tolerant and bio fortified varieties of crops, ensuring soil protection management and post harvest management, besides, providing cropping system based training to the stake holders.
Later, while chairing a meeting of State Level Sanctioning Committee of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, the Chief Secretary called for better coordination among various departments while implementing diverse components of the scheme. He directed constitution of a Steering Committee comprising all Administrative Secretaries and Directors of concerned departments and sectors including Horticulture, Animal Husbandry, Fisheries, Sheep Husbandry, Agriculture, Forestry and Wildlife, among others.
The Chief Secretary also directed to constitute a ‘Committee on Agro Forestry’ comprising Administrative Secretaries of Agriculture Department, Forest, Ecology and Environment Department, Rural Development & Panchayati Raj Department and Principal Chief Conservator of Forest to examine the potential and challenges related to agro forestry. He urged upon the Forest Department to issue guidelines to streamline the procedures regulating cultivation and harvest of permitted varieties of flora like poplar and Eucalyptus and ensure strict adherence by its field functionaries.
During the meeting, Agriculture, Horticulture and Floriculture departments were asked to explore innovation in cultivation of high value crops and introduce technological interventions of poly houses, drip irrigation and fortified fertilizers.
The State Level Sanctioning Committee of Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana, under the guidance of Chief Secretary approved the annual action plan for financial year 2020-21 amounting to Rs 75.80crores. It was informed that major activities of the Agriculture and allied departments for 2020-21 will include mitigation of effects of COVID 19 outbreak on agriculture and allied sectors, production streams and marketing infrastructure.