Pvt firm stalls at kisan mela irk farmers

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Amritsar, September 12

A kisan mela to distribute new seeds and disseminate information for farmers was organised at Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Nag Kalan village, near here, today by Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), Ludhiana.

Farmers feel that such events help in building interaction between technocrats and farmers and thus help in farmer orientated research. They also complained that over the years such events have turned out to be a platform for advertisers rather than to serve as a platform of technology transfer.

A visit to the mela revealed that stalls of cars, salad choppers and kitchen equipment, besides electronic goods apart from farm machinery and pesticides occupied more area of the arena than stalls showcasing new technology.

Farmers said they had already more tractors and farm machinery machines than required. The government should not allow big companies to promote consumerism, he added.

“If technology is displayed here even by a private company, farmers feel that it has been recommended by the university. But, cars do not fit the bracket in any way. We need solutions for problems as yield is stagnant and even going down. It will be better if that is done instead of advertising cars,” said another farmer Joginder Singh.

An official of the department said, “Private companies have to pay for stalls. The money is used to fund the event. May be we can say that it is a necessary evil.”

The PAU organises kisan melas at Nag Kalan twice a year to provide new seeds to farmers. The university experts were also seen sitting at their department stalls to inform farmers about new innovations in their respective fields. Large numbers of farmers, farm women and students of agriculture and allied subjects visited the event.

An interaction with farmers by experts of various departments was also organised. Vegetable seed kits of the Horticulture Department for kitchen gardens sold like hot potatoes during the event.

The event was attended by director, agriculture, Dr Jasvir Singh Bains, Deputy Commisioner Kamaldeep Singh Sangha, director, extension education, PAU, Dr Ashok Kumar, and other scientists of the university.

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