21 June 2021, New Delhi: The Department of Biotechnology (DBT) has issued a Special Call for North East Region as a part of its Mission Programme “Biotech-Krishi Innovation Science Application Network (Biotech-KISAN)”, with the aim to understand the local problems of the NER farmers and provide scientific solutions to those problems.
Biotech-KISAN is a scientist-farmer partnership scheme launched in 2017 for agriculture innovation with an objective to connect science laboratories with the farmers to find out innovative solutions and technologies to be applied at farm level. Under this scheme, so far 146 Biotech-KISAN Hubs have been established covering all 15 agroclimatic zones and110 Aspirational Districts in the country. The scheme has benefitted over two lakhs farmers so far by increasing their agriculture output and income. Over 200 entrepreneurships have also been developed in rural areas.
The present call specifically focuses on the North East Region as it is predominantly agrarian with70% of its workforce engaged in agriculture and allied sector for livelihood. The region produces merely 1.5 per cent of country‘s food grain and continues to be a net importer of food grains even for its domestic consumption. The NE region has untapped potential to enhance the income of the farming population by promotion of location specific crops, horticultural and plantation crops, fisheries and livestock production.
The Biotech-KISAN will be implemented in the North East Region with objective of linking available innovative agriculture technologies to the farm with the small and marginal farmers, specially women farmers of the region. The Hubs in NER will collaborate with the top scientific institutions across the country as well as State Agricultural Universities (SAUs) / Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) / existing state agriculture extension services / system and other Farmers’ organizations in the NER for demonstrations of technologies and training of farmers.