JORHAT, April 17 -�Vice President, M Venkaiah Naidu�while lauding the contributions of the Assam Agricultural University (AAU) as a pioneering institute towards the growth of the agricultural sector in the north-eastern region, has appealed to the scientists to focus on farmer-oriented research activities to improve the agriculture sector of the country. Naidu was today speaking as the chief guest at the inaugural function�of the year-long celebrations of golden jubilee of the AAU at Borbheta here.
He proposed the idea of having more student-farmer interactions at the field-level to have a better understanding of the problems faced by the farmers regarding cultivation and other related issues to improve the agricultural scenario of the country.
�A provision of making students spent certain amount of time with the farmers should be thought before awarding them degrees so that they (students) could work to find solutions to the problems faced by farmers,� Naidu said.
The Vice President said the agricultural scientists through their continuous path-breaking research and developmental activities over the years have enabled the country�s farmers in achieving food security. He especially acknowledged the contributions of�noted scientist Dr MS Swaminathan in India�s progress in the agricultural sector.
Naidu, while pointing out that the scientists were facing�new challenges in view of the changing situations in terms of climatic change, decreasing water reserves, soil degradation, increasing human population and several other conditions, threat to bio-diversity cover, said India�s scientists have the potential to ensure food security for the��world.
He said that agricultural scientists have a great challenge ahead in making India self-sufficient in pulses and oil seeds. Stating that India�s basic culture was agriculture with agrarian economy developing since ages, Naidu said all the stakeholders should join hands together to attract people towards farming so that production of foodgrain and other crops do not decrease.
Naidu while calling for efforts to bring down the urban-divide gap and rapid migration of people from villages to urban centres, said the farming should be made an attractive and lucrative career option to accelerate country�s progress. He said that all the basic facilities and amenities available in the urban centres should be made available in the rural areas.
The Vice President while expressing his anguish over attacks on women and the people belong to SC/ST communities in recent times, said this was a problem of mindset of �some people� which needed to be changed.
Making a call to follow the motto of share and care, Naidu said all sections of people cutting across all kinds of barriers, be it political, religion, caste, have to unite to prevent attacks on women and members of the SC/ST communities.
Assam Governor Professor Jagdish Mukhi , who is the AAU chancellor, State Agriculture Minister Atul Bora also addressed the gathering. AAU Vice-Chancellor�Dr KM Bujarbaruah�gave the welcome address describing varsity�s journey and the achievements so far. Several people were felicitated on the occasion for their contributions to the society in different spheres including farming.
Later in the afternoon, Naidu visited the CSIR- North East Institute of Science and Technology on the Pulibor outskirts here and addressed the scientists and employees of the institute and took a look of products developed by NEIST.