TUBER CROPS DAY 2014 commemorating THIRUKARTHIKA day

The Indian Society for Root Crops (ISRC) and the Central Tuber Crops Research Institute (CTCRI) organized the TUBER CROPS DAY 2014 commemorating THIRUKARTHIKA day on 5th December, 2014 at CTCRI campus, Thiruvananthapuram at 10.30 am. Dr.JT. Sherieff , Vice President ,ISRC delivered the welcome address. Presiding over the function Dr.S.K.Chakrabarti, Director, CTCRI. Talked about the importance of tuber crops and its contribution towards food security. He also stated that the CTCRI is the only research institute in the world conducting research exclusively on tuber crops. He also briefed about the technologies developed by the Institute and appreciated the tuber crop farmers . Prof. George Varghese, Director, Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment, Thiruvananthapuram, inaugurated the programme. In his inaugural address he appreciated the farmers for doing tuber crops cultivation and contributing to the food security of the country through their efforts. He also appreciated the research works done by the institute and for celebrating the Thrrikartika day as Tuber crops Day. The key note address was delivered by Dr.M. Chandradathan, Director, VSSC (ISRO) Thiruvananthapuram. He has briefed about the importance of Tuber crops day. He told that the passion towards agriculture need to be brought about in the younger generation. He also talked about the advantages and disadvantages of the GM crops. He also highlighted the role of communication satellites in disaster management and providing weather reports which is beneficial to the farmers and public. In this occasion Dr. C.S. Ravindran,Head, Crop Production and Dr. M.Anantharaman, Head, extension and social sciences were felicitated for their contribution for the growth and development of the tuber crops. Shri. Balachandran Nair, President -, Sangha Mythiri and Shri. Ramachandran , from Peyad were felicitated for popularising tuber crops cultivation in Kerala. Dr. V.S.Santhosh Mithra, Secretary ISRC proposed the vote of thanks. In continuation with this, a scientist farmer interaction session was also organized. Shri. K. Jyothishkumar, Doordarshan Kendra, Thiruvanathapuram served as the moderator. The doubts and queries raised by the farmers were replied by the scientists of the Institute. Farmers were taken around the experimental fields and laboratories and were made aware about the quality planting material production using rapid multiplication techniques, cassava based bio-pesticides to manage crop pests and product diversification and value addition in tuber crops. Around 250 farmers from different districts of Kerala and Tamil Nadu participated in this day long celebration. The farmers were also provided with Thirukarthika kit at nominal cost. (S.K.CHAKRABARTI)

Fruits of research should benefit farmers: VSSC chief

Thiruvananthapuram: A leading space scientist on Friday observed that fruits of research and development, including those propelled by ISRO, should benefit the farmers for making a leap in agricultural production in the country.

Delivering the key-note address at the Central Tuber Crops Research Institute (CTCRI) here on the 'tuber crops day', M Chandradathan, Director Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC), said surplus production of farm produce was not only vital for food security but also for industrial growth as agriculture provided important raw materials.

Chandradathan noted that though the ISRO was widely known for its successful launches including the Mars Orbiter Mangalyaan, the space agency also played a crucial role in developing technologies that helped farmers.

The success in developing remote sensing applications was a case in point as they helped forecast weather changes and natural disasters like cyclones or excessive rainfall, he said.

Inaugurating the function, Dr George Varghese, Director of the State Council for Science Technology and Environment, said causing stress on earth by excessive use of pesticides and other pollutants would spell doom for agriculture and upset the food security.

Recalling that in the past farmers used to take great care to protect the land they tilled from environmental degradation, he said good practices like organic cultivation should be promoted by scientific institutions.

Presiding over the function, S K Chakrabarti, Director CTCRI, said increasing productivity of tuber crops was vital since they formed a major component of the food basket in the country.

The researches carried out by CTCRI had contributed significantly in increasing the productivity of a variety of tuber crops, which were an important dietary supplement after cereal.

The inaugural session was followed by an interaction between scientists and farmers.

Techno incubation Centre of Tuber Crops, Inagurated

Techno incubation Centre of Tuber Crops was inaugurated by Shri. Oommen Chandy, the Honourable Chief Minister of Kerala on 31st July, 2014 at CTCRI, Thiruvananthapuram. The centre was set up with the financial aid from Government of Kerala to help small scale entrepreneurs to manufacture their product from tuber crops in their own brand name. The Chief Minister promised all help to the centre and he called upon young entrepreneurs to come forward and utilize this facility. During this function "Tuber Crops development programmes of Kerala State" also was launched by him and he hoped that this programme may give a fillip to the tuber crops development in the state by supplying quality planting material to farmers in sufficient quantity. Shri. K.P.Mohanan, Minister for Agriculture, Government of Kerala was the guest of honour. Shri.M.A.Vahid MLA and Dr.S.K.Chakrabarti, Director CTCRI also spoke during the occasion. Dr.G.Padmaja, Head Division of Crop Utilization, CTCRI welcomed the gathering and Dr.James George, Project Coordinator, AICRPTC proposed vote of thanks. This function was followed by Scientist- Farmer interactive meeting and field visit

Training programme on Farming system involving tuber crops’

A one day training programme on ‘Farming system involving tuber crops’ was organized at Dayanidhiguda village, Koraput Block, Koraput District of Odisha under Tribal Sub-Plan on 23.07.2014. Dr. M. Nedunchezhiyan organized the training programme with the help of local Ngo, PRAGATI. Dr. R.C. Ray and Dr. K. Laxminarayana from the Regional Centre of CTCRI, Mr. A.K. Patnaik Deputy Director Horticulture (Koraput) and Mr. Murali Mishra District Development Manager (Koraput), NABARD graced the programme. Seventy farmers and farm women from Dayanidhiguda and Kendar villages attended the training programme. Mrs. Luna Panda, PRAGATI welcomed the gathering. Dr. M. Nedunchezhiyan trained the farmers on importance of tuber crops cultivation and farming system approach for sustainable livelihood under the changing climate. Dr. K. Laxminarayana imparted training on taro, sweet potato and yam bean cultivation and Dr. R.C. Ray explained value addition of tuber crops to the farmers. Mr. A.K. Patnaik, DDH (Koraput) explained the farmers importance of tuber crops in livelihood improvement. Mr. Murali Misra, DDM (Koraput), NABARD explained the farmers the benefits of various schemes of NABARD and asked the farmers to utilize for tuber crops cultivation. Then Mr. Murali Misra and Mr. A.K. Patnaik distributed yam bean seeds to the tribal farmers as contingent crop against irregular rainfall. Mr. Prabhakar Adhikari, proposed vote of thanks.

Training Programme on ‘‘Tuber Crops Technologies for Livelihood and Nutritional Security in Watershed Areas of Keonjhar, Odisha’

TA 5 days training programme on ‘Tuber Crops Technologies for Livelihood and Nutritional Security in Watershed Areas of Keonjhar, Odisha’ sponsored by Project Director, Watersheds, Keonjhar was organized by Regional Centre of CTCRI, Bhubaneswar from 30.04.2014 to 04.05.2014. The training programme included 3 days training and 2 days field visits. Dr. R.S. Misra, Head, Regional Centre of CTCRI, Bhubaneswar welcomed the participants in the inaugural function on 30.4.2014 at 10.00 AM. A total of 30 farmers representing Anandapur block of Keonjhar district, Odisha had been imparted training on various tuber crops technologies including agro-techniques, nutrient management, pest & disease management, value added products as well as agro-techniques of important vegetable crops, integrated pest & disease management in vegetables and fruit crops, vermicompost production technology, opportunities of aquaculture in watershed areas, production technology of cashew nut & potato cultivation, agroforestry enterprises in watershed areas and demonstration of home made products of cassava, sweet potato and colocasia. An amount of Rs. 49,430/- (Rupees Forty nine thousands four hundred and thirty) only released by the Project Director, Watershed, Keonjhar, Odisha for organization of 3 days training programme excluding the expenditure towards transportation, accommodation, breakfast and dinner to the participants. Budgetary requirement for field visits to the farmers was borne by the sponsoring agency. Sh. Haribandhu Seth, Additional Project Director, Watershed, Keonjhar was graced both inaugural and valedictory functions. Dr. S.K. Mishra, I/C Head, Regional Station of Central Aviation Research Institute, Bhubaneswar has graced the valedictory function as Guest of Honour. Dr. K. Laxminarayana, Principal Scientist, Regional Centre of CTCRI has acted as Convener of the training programme. The participants were honoured by presentation of certificates in the valedictory function on 2nd May, 2014.