Saving Loktak Lake and Siroy Lily from extinction is priority, ISBD director

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IMPHAL, January 13: The first National Bio-Resources and Sustainable Development Summit will be held at the Institute of Bio-Resources and Sustainable Development (IBSD), Takyelpat. This was announced by IBSD director Prof Dinabandhu Sahoo at a press briefing today at his office chamber. He also informed that large number of dignitaries have made confirmations about participating in the summit.

The major topics that will be discussed are the role of microbial resources in fermentation, bio-fertilizers, bio-pesticides, bioactive metabolites, the role of algae in food, feed, fodder, pharmaceuticals, bio-fuels and rural development, the role of animal resources such as insect, fish and avian fauna for food and other uses, the role of plant resources for medicinal, aromatic, agricultural and horticulture development, biodiversity conservation and management, and the role of various stakeholders in sustainable development.

Prof Sahoo said the inclusion of the North East Region in the list of mega-biodiversity hotspots of the world provided a fillip to the researchers, resource planners, environmental enthusiasts and the local think-tanks about stopping the depletion of biodiversity in the region and finding scientific ways of sustainable uses of bio-resources.

During his time as the director, he said, he wanted to save Siroi Lilly as a first priority and then the Loktak Lake as both are facing threats of extinction. He added that he also wanted to improve the productivity of black rice and orchids for importing these products in big markets.

`People are quite aware that the Loktak Lake faces a big threat but are not doing anything. It needs to be protected for improving its deteriorating condition. The Loktak Lake has been blessed with ample bio-resources which can be utilised in various arenas. It must be protected because it is the pride of the state and the country, and also because many people are depending on it for earning their livelihood,` he said, adding, `actions to protect Loktak Lake will be soon taken up.`

He highlighted that many natural resources are available in Manipur but people are not able to harness such natural bounty. Various projects can be taken up generating a lot of employment opportunities, he said, adding that the aim of IBSD is to make Manipur a role model for other states.

Managing Director of Aqu-Agri Processing Pvt Ltd, Abhiram Seth said that IBSD have lots of qualified experts from whom the people of the State can acquire knowledge and take advantage, adding that the land is quite fertile that can grow various crops but the agricultural lands remain uncultivated for long which is of grave concern as people here do only one-time cultivation in a year.

He further said that when he visited the marketplace at Imphal, he was quite shock to know that the prices of vegetables here are as high as vegetable prices in Delhi where nothing is grown.

The State has the capability to produce many crops and vegetables but only a few cultivates vegetables, he said, adding that the people must produce lots of vegetable and crops to improve their economy.

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