‘This will also help check migration of youth to cities’

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah on Friday called upon agricultural universities and the Agriculture Department to focus extensively on farm extension to make agriculture profitable.

This will not only improve the socio-economic conditions of farmers, but also help check the migration of youth who are into agriculture to urban areas, the Chief Minister said at the valedictory of the yearlong golden jubilee celebrations of the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore, here.

Concern

He expressed concern over farm extension activities having almost come to a standstill. The scenario was different 30 to 40 years ago when serious efforts were being made to reach the innovations to fields, he said.

Farmers were losing interest in agriculture as they were finding it difficult to make profit, he said, and asked universities to devise an extension system to increase the income of farmers by helping them to reap the benefits of research.

The Chief Minister said he studied law only because he failed as a farmer. “I would have continued as farmer if I had made profits from agriculture,” he said. The failure of the agricultural system had its impact on non-farming sectors too as it had triggered migration from rural areas to urban areas, adding to the woes of cities that were facing a plethora of civic problems. Checking migration through good agricultural extension system would also help in reducing the problems of cities, Mr. Siddaramaiah said.

Minister of State for Agriculture Krishna Byre Gowda called upon agricultural universities and the department to change their thinking process.

UASB Vice-Chancellor K. Narayana Gowda said 29,847 students had graduated from the university in the last 50 years. The university held 26 programmes to mark the yearlong celebrations.

Keywords: farming

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