The 5th Convocation of the Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology of Jammu (SKUAST-J) was held recently.
Governor N.N. Vohra, Chancellor of the University presided over the function while Dr. ArvindPanagariya, Vice Chairman, NITI Aayog, Government of India was the Chief Guest and delivered the Convocation Address. Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, Pro-Chancellor of the University, also spoke on the occasion
Highlighting major agriculture production challenges before the state and the country, the Governor expressed concern on the growing adverse effects of climate change in the agriculture sector. He exhorted the agriculture scientists to identify relevant initiatives for significantly improving both production and productivity and suggested a sharper focus on soil and water management; conservation agriculture and energy use efficiency to reduce the impact of climate change on productivity.
The Chancellor awarded 12 Ph.D. degrees in Agriculture and Veterinary Sciences; 67 Master’s degrees in Agriculture, Biotechnology and Agri Business Management; 38 Master’s degrees in Veterinary Sciences; 7 Master’s degrees in Basic Sciences; 54 Bachelor degrees in Agriculture and Biotechnology; 45 Bachelor degrees in Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Sciences; and 3 Gold Medals and 42 Certificates of Merit were awarded by the Pro-Chancellor.
Dr. Arvind Panagariya said, “The NITI Aayog’s Expert Committee on Land Leasing has proposed a Model Agricultural Land Leasing Act, based on a critical review of the existing agricultural tenancy laws of the states and keeping in view the need to legalize land leasing to promote agriculture efficiency, equitable and rapid rural development.
Stressing on the need to adopt technological advancements for increasing Agricultural production. Dr. Panagariya said that the farmers need to be convinced and motivated to adopt well-tested technologies with adequate safeguards to boost agricultural productivity especially Pulses and oilseeds production for which country hugely depends on imports for meeting domestic demands.
The Governor in his address also said that to feed 1.3 billion countrymen “we need another revolution in agriculture and its allied sectors.”
He stressed the need for the proactive role by KrishiVigyanKendras for taking new technologies and researchers to the farmers and the fields.
Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti, in her address, exhorted the Farm Scientists to evolve techniques and practices to give a boost to the production and productivity in agriculture and allied sectors. She stressed taking research from the labs to the fields for the betterment of agriculture sector and exhorted the students of Farm Universities to be innovative and contribute to making this a lucrative profession for the youngsters.