IMPHAL, December 31: Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam, today distributed Tractors and Powers Tillers to selected farmers in a function held at the office premises of Veterinary & Animal Husbandry Department, Sanjenthong.
The function was also attended by Minister (Com & Inds/Vety & AH/Seri) Govindas Konthoujam and Parliamentary Secretary (Hort & SC/CADA) Vungzagin Valte.
Farm mechanization is one of the main components of Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) which is implemented by the Department of Horticulture & Soil Conservation, Manipur.
The department also published one calendar 2016 showing the achievements of the schemes of the department and showcasing the activities taken up by the department for the farmers of Manipur.
Deputy Chief Minister Gaikhangam speaking at the function said the distribution of tractors/Power Tillers and release of calendar is nothing but encouragement to the farmers and information to the public on the initiative taken by the horticulture and soil conservation.
The objective of this initiative is to make Manipur self reliant in term of food production, he said.
He further said that it is a matter of concern and a very disturbing trend in our State that agricultural land is gradually swallowed up by buildings for commercial purposes.
Even though the necessity for building infrastructure is high we still need to enforce strict rules/laws to sought for permission before building any form of infrastructures in agricultural lands for the fact that food is the basic human need which cannot be replaced by the advancement in technology or the infrastructure, he said.
“By saying so I also don’t mean to be very conservative and stop people from building infrastructures, but what I mean is we need to do these things side by side maintaining the balance of both and understanding the consequences,” explained Gaikhangam.
When the raw materials are in abundance the market will come automatically so we should not be so concern about the market first, he said clearing the air about the people’s notion of lack of market in the State.
The government is also trying to provide market by co-ordinating with the other states and agencies, he informed.
For building up market facilities like cold storage it needs uninterrupted water and power supply. And for this a composite approach is needed and the government is working on to get this, he said.
Nevertheless, the first priority is to ensure that the raw materials are abundantly available in this part of the country, he said adding that appealed the farmers to put more effort for abundant production.
We are well aware of the fact that production in the State is not enough to meet the demands before adding that vegetables like cabbage, potato, onion etc are still brought in from outside the State to meet the demands, maintained the Deputy Chief Minster.
“So let us improve our work culture, to bring overall development,” he appealed the people.
Delivering his speech, Minister Govindas Konthoujam, said in the absence of big factory and industries agro based or cottage industries are the only options for the state.
Moreover, Manipur’s agro climatic condition is suitable for horticulture, agriculture, and other kinds of agro based industries, he expressed his confidence developing the area would be more vital for the state’s production.
He divulged that under the leadership of our Chief Minister and Deputy Chief Minister every district will have an industrial estate keeping in mind the importance.
Gonvidas further assured that before the end of current fiscal year the state Government will be inaugurating two industrial estates one at Bishnupur and Thoubal districts.
This year (2015-16) the Department of Horticulture & Soil Conservation distributed 28 tractors, 110 power tillers and 194 tractors/Power tiller driven equipment to the selected farmers by providing financial assistance of Rs 1 lakh for Tractor, Rs 75,000 for Power Tiller and Rs 15,000 for Tractor/Power Tiller driven equipment.