The Fact News Service
Mohali, September 9
To update with the ground reality, a series of meetings with the farmers have been started by the Director Horticulture Punjab, Gulab Singh Gill with the farmers of Punjab State. After meeting with the farmers of district Patiala and Fatehgarh Sahib districts, a meeting with the farmers of district SAS Nagar and Roopnagar was held on September 6 at the Directorate Horticulture, Kheti Bhawan here.
20 progressive farmers from both the districts participated in this meeting. Firstly, Director Horticulture welcomed all the participants and apprised them of the purpose of the meeting. He further said that the Department of Horticulture is committed to bring diversification in view of the rapidly decreasing ground water table in the state. He said that being less water guzzling crops, horticulture crops are a better alternative of traditional crops for diversification.
After that the farmers of both the districts raised their issues one by one. Subsidy required for fencing of orchards and farms to avoid the damage of stray animals and for replacement of polysheet, shade net, drip irrigation after 5 years of establishment of the unit are major demands of the farmers from both the districts. They also demanded to revive the departmental scheme of supplying plastic crates and agrochemicals to the farmers so that they can get quality crates and agrochemicals at nominal prices. Farmers of district Roopnagar requested for financial assistance for planting material & packaging material of strawberry. To get rid from the higher electricity bills, farmers requested that similar for agriculture crops their commercial electricity connection needs to be converted to A.P. connection for mushroom units and poly hose units which can boost the diversification further.
After listening to the issues of the farmers, Director Horticulture assured that the issues in purview of the Department shall be addressed at the earliest whereas, the issues beyond the purview of the Department shall be sent to the Punjab Govt. for consideration and their suitable solutions. He appealed to the farmers for self-marketing, group marketing and marketing by making FPOs so that they can get more profit from their produce. He urged the farmers to produce safe to eat fruits and vegetables by using the fertilizers and pesticides judiciously.
On this day, the Director Horticulture also visited the Govt. Garden and Nursery, Majra, SAS Nagar and issued necessary instructions for the upgradation of the nursery to produce a greater number of quality fruit plants. On the occasion, Dinesh Kumar, Deputy Director Horticulture, SAS Nagar, Gurjit Singh Bal, Assistant Director Horticulture, Roopnagar and Horticulture Development Officers of districts SAS Nagar and Roopnagar were present.