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Focus is on improving acreage under cultivation, says Minister

Special Correspondent
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Scientists should come up with solutions: Damodaran

Agriculture Minister S. Damodaran releasing a book at the 79th Scientific Workers' Conference at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in Coimbatore on Friday.– Photo: M. Periasamy
Agriculture Minister S. Damodaran releasing a book at the 79th Scientific Workers' Conference at Tamil Nadu Agricultural University in Coimbatore on Friday.– Photo: M. Periasamy

The State was focussing on improving acreage under agriculture by adopting efficient and cost-effective technologies, said Minister for Agriculture S. Damodaran here on Friday.

He was inaugurating the 29th Scientific Workers Conference of the Agriculture Department at the Tamil Nadu Agricultural University.

Mr. Damodaran asked scientists to come up with solutions to problems plaguing the agriculture sector in the State. Farm level intervention using computer-based crop management system and timely supply of input were necessary to address the concerns caused by decline in area under cultivation, he said. He said farmers groups should be integrated and research wing should be strengthened to improve the agriculture progress.

Agriculture Production Commissioner and Secretary to Government for Agriculture Sandeep Saxena said that the drought-like situation in 2012-13 had compelled the department to reorient its strategy so as to make agriculture independent of water, using technology. He said that achieving the agriculture growth target of 5 per cent during the XII Plan period rests on the hands of the agriculture extension staff.Emphasis merely on production has led us to the present problem. Crop diversification, farm mechanisation, technology adoption, and integrated farming techniques were needed, he added.

Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Vice-Chancellor K Ramasamy spoke.

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