Meghalaya CM launches Bamboo, Agar & Ramie cultivation at Chokpot
TURA: As part of the Government's initiative to promote Green Economy in the State, Chief Minister Dr. Mukul Sangma launched the Bamboo, Agar and Ramie cultivation at Chokpot in South Garo Hills in an impressive gathering organized jointly by the Horticulture and Agriculture departments on Saturday.
The Chief Minister also inaugurated the newly constructed Multi-Facility Centre in Chokpot Block complex and later planted a few bamboo and agar plants around the complex.
Addressing the gathering on the occasion, Dr. Sangma said that this is an inclusive programme initiated by the Government to empower the farmers who constitute 80 percent of the population in the State. "But if the targeted population do not know about these programmes they will not get the benefit, therefore we have taken a different approach by having such kind of awareness programmes because social mobilization is the key to success of every developmental programme", he said. "South Garo Hills is the number one target as plenty of land is available here", he added.
He urged upon the line departments to ensure that plantation is carried out in all barren lands and those which has been abandoned after jhum cultivation.
The Chief Minister also stressed on the need for dynamism in our approach to development saying that the State cannot remain in status quo but generate that momentum of growth and sustain it. Calling upon the people to come forward to register for Agar plantation, Dr. Sangma said "we will work to prove that the State is the gene bank of Agar", adding that single window clearance has already been given for Agar processing in Ri Bhoi district.
During the course of his address the Chief Minister also informed the gathering that the road from Williamnagar to Chokpot has already been sanctioned and to speed up the project construction work should be taken up from both ends, he said drawing huge round of applause from the gathering.
Former Director, Horticulture Daniel Ingty, who also spoke briefly, said that earlier bamboo and agar used to be taken as forest products, but now under the new initiative of the government these are being brought under organized cultivation in convergence with the administration and the line departments.
Scientist from ICAR, Dr. Tanmoy who will be training the farmers on these cultivations, felt that huge areas of land are being used for shifting cultivation and rubber plantation and said that the ecosystem can be retained if the three crops can be integrated in the jhum system.
South Garo Hills Deputy Commissioner S. N. Marak and Executive Member, GHADC, O R Marak were among others who also addressed the gathering on the occasion.