DIMAPUR, Dec 11: The Nagaland government has put forward proposals to the Centre to set up national or regional institutes in agriculture and allied sectors in different parts of the state.
Representing the state in the 25th regional committee meeting of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) through video conference on Saturday, agriculture production commissioner Y Kikheto Sema said even after 59 years of statehood, there is no national or regional institute worth the name in the state.
The meeting was chaired by ICAR director general Dr T Mohapatra, and attended by the senior central government officials, vice chancellors of agriculture universities, heads of ICAR institutions, scientists and officers of agriculture and allied departments of the North East Region.
The state government has demanded setting up of College of Agriculture under Central Agriculture University at State Agriculture Research Station at Yisemyong in Mokokchung district, Regional Centre for Soil and Water Conservation at State Soil and Water Conservation Training Research and Demonstration Institute at Sechu Zubza in Kohima district, Regional Livestock Centre on Pigs in Zunheboto, establishment of an organic hub with quality control facilities and adopting the Naga model of integrated settled farming by all the agriculture and allied departments in a cluster mode.
Sema told the meeting that the Naga model of integrated settled farming is being implemented at Boke-Botsa under Kohima district as a pilot project, and if the Government of India promotes this model, the jhum areas can be reduced and forest protected, thereby increasing ecological services. Jhum is an agricultural system practised by the tribal communities in the northeastern region where a farming community slashes forests on a planned location, burns the slash and cultivates the land for a limited number of periods.
The state government also proposed for a Krishi Vigyan Kendra in the newly created district of Noklak in the state.
Sema said most of the centrally sponsored schemes and policies are designed for mainland India as one-size-fits-all programmes. Therefore the policymakers and scientists should also focus on the North East Region-specific schemes, he said adding even there is much variation in cost norms for hilly regions because of the topographical challenges.