M.S. Swaminathan inaugurates farm school at Pasupathikoil

Every farmer should become a scientist by learning from his experience and finding out methods to meet the challenges in agriculture. For this to happen, farmers should share their field experiences among themselves, observed M.S. Swaminathan, agricultural scientist, here on Sunday.

Inaugurating a farm school established by M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation with financial assistance from Indian Overseas Bank at Pasupathikoil near Thanjavur, Dr. Swaminathan advocated a ‘land-to-land’ approach in which farmers can share their field experiences and contribute to food production. The farm school is aimed at providing a platform for farmers to share their experience.

Stressing the importance of practical knowledge, Dr. Swaminathan said that ‘an ounce of practice is worth tonnes of theory.’

The Cauvery delta is facing many challenges such as water scarcity, climate change, and global warming. Farmers are taking to water efficient cultivation methods such as System of Rice Intensification (SRI) method and drip irrigation. The idea is to find out how more production can be achieved for every drop of water.

He advised farmers of Cauvery delta to take to cultivation of millets along with paddy and called for joint efforts by farmers, scientists, bankers, traders and officials for increasing food production in the country.

He appreciated the Indian Overseas Bank for providing financial assistance for establishing the farm school at Pasupathikoil. The institution is based on the principles of learning by doing. It will impart a sense of grassroots realism to the capacity building programmes.

Raghu Vatsa Chari, Chief Regional Manager, Indian Overseas Bank, said that taking the suggestion made by M.S. Swaminathan for creation of farm schools, Indian Overseas Bank has given Rs. 25 lakhs for establishing farm schools in five places in the country.

Two schools have been allotted for Tamil Nadu one at Kannivadi in Dindigul district and another at Pasupathikoil.