Youth, farming hold key to country’s growth as super economy: Governor

A student receiving her degree at the hands of Governor C.P. Radhakrishnan as TNAU V-C Geethalakshmi and SKLTSHU V-C B. Neeraja Prabhakar look on at the horticultural university’s convocation on Tuesday.

Telangana Governor C.P. Radhakrishnan has stated that India has ample scope and opportunities to grow to a $30 trillion GDP by 2047 and it would be possible with ‘Viksit Bharat’ (developed country) in which the youth would play a leading role.

Speaking at the third convocation of the Sri Konda Laxman Telangana State Horticultural University held on the university campus at Mulugu in Siddipet district on Tuesday in the capacity of the Chancellor, he said the Union government was providing more support to natural and organic farming for further growth of the agriculture sector as it was contributing 18% to the GDP.

He expressed hope that the importance of horticulture and forestry sectors would increase along with agriculture. He stated that agriculture was the main source of income for over 70% of the rural population in the country and over 82% of farmers were small and marginal.

Vice-Chancellor of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Dr. Geethalakshmi, who was the chief guest at the convocation, said there was a need to focus on technology-based agriculture in order to achieve sustainable food and nutritional security in the face of diminishing cultivated land, natural resources, crop productivity and climate change for the country to grow as a super economy.

She stated that precision farming, big data, artificial intelligence, robots, drones and remote sensing should be introduced to farmers so that the productivity of crops could go up. She stressed the development of post-harvesting management facilities including modern storage facilities as 20% to 30% yield loss was taking place after harvesting.

Explaining that speed breeding was an advanced technology to develop short duration crop varieties, she said gene editing and gene pyramid techniques could be used to develop varieties that could withstand water stress and high temperatures.

Vice-Chancellor of SKLTSHU B. Neeraja Prabhakar said that the university was providing necessary training to students to develop them as good horticultural human resources and also provide technical advice to farmers at the field level. Degrees were awarded to 156 students, including 7 students who secured gold medals. Registrar A. Bhagwan, Dean M. Rajasekhar, Research Director Dr. Kiran, Commissioner of Horticulture Ashok Reddy and others participated.

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