The four-day event begins on Saturday

Krishi Mela, the four-day mega annual event of the University of Agricultural Sciences–Dharwad, will be held on the university campus from September 21.

Chief Minister Siddaramaiah will formally inaugurate the event on September 22. Ministers Santosh Lad, Krishna Byre Gowda, R.V. Deshpande, T.B. Jaychandra, H.K. Patil, Shamanur Shivashankarappa and Satish Jarkiholi will take part in the inaugural session.

Vice-Chancellor H.S. Vijaykumar told reporters in Dharwad on Tuesday that the theme of this year’s event was ‘Water management for food security’. The event would focus on four components — water conservation, watershed management, irrigation management and reclaiming saline land.

The country was marching ahead with the proposed food security legislation and water management plays a crucial role in sustaining food quality, he said. The event would have a special talk by water management expert Rajendra Singh from Rajasthan.

Salinisation of agricultural land was yet another challenge for the farm sector. In Bijapur district, nearly 30,000 acres of farmland had turned saline and it had severely affected agricultural activities. Talks during the event would focus on reclaiming this land and turning it fertile, the Vice-Chancellor said.

The university would arrange for dissemination of need-based information on latest farm implements and technologies to farmers. Stalls would be set up to demonstrate the latest implements.

Another feature of this year’s event would be focus on creating awareness among farmers about government schemes, he said.

Citing an example, he said the Union government had launched a scheme for setting up gowdowns at the village level. However, a majority of farmers in north Karnataka were not aware of it. In Gangavathi, several groups of farmers had set up 277 rural gowdowns and procured the produce of other farmers. Such farmers would be invited to the mela to educate their counterparts from other places. Emphasis would also be on disseminating information on group marketing, which reduces the costs, he added.

To introduce farmers to new varieties of crops developed by the university, a field demonstration, Kshethrotsava, would be held on all the four days of the mela.

As many as 550 stalls displaying seeds, agricultural implements and traditional food items would be set up, the Vice-Chancellor said.

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