The Eastern India region including Jharkhand, Bihar, Orissa, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal, Assam and Eastern U.P. has the potential to usher in the second Green Revolution in the country. This will be realized if the challenges in the form of low productivity, erratic climatic conditions, inadequate support and infrastructural facilities are addressed. The growing need for food and the flattening yield levels in Punjab and Haryana while posing a problem, is at the same time an opportunity. Rice is the major crop in the region alongwith other important crops like maize, pulses, oilseeds & wheat. While initiatives are underway for enhancing productivity in different agro-ecological sub regions, the challenges are daunting. The effective way forward would be to constantly explore newer options to meet the twin objectives of enhancing production & productivity.
There must be special emphasis on technologies that would benefit the resource poor and marginal farmers, especially from the tribal populations. A program that is truly inclusive with benefits trickling down to the poorest would be the key essentiality. The Birsa Agricultural University has the unique advantage in terms of its location and long history. It looks forward to demonstrate the great transformational power of agriculture in the region. The backward & forward linkages to strengthen the value chain in agriculture, secondary agriculture and agro industry would be crucial. The University would strive to equip its students with good technical and communication skills, make them job ready with the potential to evolve into job providers and be ambassadors of the University.
It is hoped that the synergy generated by the efforts of all stakeholders would be a harbinger leading to great benefits for the state of Jharkhand.
-Dr. Nitin Madan Kulkarni, IAS