GUWAHATI, April 10 - In order to motivate the youth of Assam to take up farming as a dignified calling, Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal today emphasised on creating a peer group in the agriculture sector by promoting progressive farmers.
The Chief Minister, while inaugurating a state-of-the-art hatchery of the Assam Livestock and Poultry Corporation (ALPCO), a Government of Assam undertaking, at Panjabari here today, reiterated the state government�s commitment to extend all necessary support to people engaged in livestock production, a press release said.
�The economy of the state will make significant headway only when the agriculture sector is properly strengthened. Livestock farming, which is an integral part of our agriculture sector, has huge market within the state and outside. The abundant resources available in the state must be capitalised using the latest technology to provide opportunities for dignified source of earning to our youth�, Sonowal said.
He said that introducing progressive farmers as a peer group would inspire the youth to take up farming, and this will propel growth in the agriculture sector.
Stating that opportunities in Assam�s livestock market stretch up to the ASEAN countries, the Chief Minister urged the Veterinary Department to come up with result-oriented initiatives to make the state surplus in livestock production.
Sonowal asked the department to carry out a survey to ascertain the livestock demand in the state vis-a-vis its supply so that appropriate interventions can be made to plug the gap. He asserted that the state government would extend full support to farmers engaged in livestock production and also called upon the banks to join hands with the farmers.
�The Assam Government has launched the Chief Minister Samagra Gramya Unnayan Yojana under which around Rs 33,000 crore would be spent to double farmers� income in the state,� he said, urging the people to work together with the government for implementing this scheme in a mission mode. He also underlined the potential of the Northeast to emerge as the organic hub of India and the importance of maintaining the state�s green cover.
Sonowal also presented the Chief Minister Preronaa Award to 10 progressive farmers engaged in livestock production. Those who received the award are Manoj Basumatary, Prasenjit Moran, Pabitra Bora, Raja Ram Mohan Rao, Lilakanta Pegu, Juna Tamuli Barman, Arpanjyoti Sarma, Jayanta Deka, Abhijit Phukan and JNB Group of Rangiya. The awardees were felicitated with a gamosa, citation and a cheque of Rs 10,000 each.
The new hatchery set up by ALPCO with financial support from NABARD would produce eight lakh pullets every month and benefit over four lakh poultry farmers of the state.
ALPCO Chairman Manoj Saikia, Agriculture, Veterinary and Animal Husbandry Minister Atul Bora, Media Advisor to the CM Hrishikesh Goswami, MLA Rituparna Baruah, Veterinary Department Commissioner and Secretary Mukti Gogoi and ALPCO Managing Director Dipali Devi were also present on the occasion.