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Nagaland

Kronu urges Centre to improve agriculture infrastructure in Nagaland

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By EMN Updated: Sep 07, 2021 11:51 pm
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Neiba Kronu, Mhathung Yanthan and Y Kikheto Sema during the video conference meeting on Tuesday.

Dimapur, Sep. 7 (EMN): The minister for Planning and Parliamentary Affairs, Neiba Kronu, on Tuesday highlighted the need to improve agriculture infrastructure in Nagaland during the video conference meeting with the Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Narendra Singh Tomar.

Kronu attended the meeting along with Advisor of Horticulture, Mhathung Yanthan and Agriculture Production Commissioner, Y Kikheto Sema as the chief minister of the state and minister for Agriculture were currently on a tour.

Several topics including Agriculture Infrastructure Fund (AIF), Pradhan Mantri Kisan Samman Nidhi (PM-KISAN), Digital Agriculture, National Mission on Oilseeds and Oil Palm (MNOOP) were discussed at the meeting attended by 13 states, including Nagaland, according to an update from the DIPR.

Speaking on behalf of the government of Nagaland, Kronu told the house that the AIF wasn’t progressing on expected lines in the state “as the lending institutions have been shying away from financing the farmers and entrepreneurs due to issues of collateral securities”.

So, he requested to the Union government to help the state in creating more agriculture infrastructure through grant-in-aids.

On PM-KISAN, he stated a total of 2,00,082 farmers from Nagaland had benefitted from the scheme, with an amount of INR. 265.52 crore being transferred to their accounts as on August 31 2021. He added that banks had disbursed an amount of INR 223.54 crore to 35,959 KCC beneficiaries, covering all districts of the state.

Speaking about digital agriculture, the minister stated that “the state is yet to implement collection of digital database of land records because of the state’s peculiar land–holding system”. However, he informed that the departments of Agriculture and Soil and Water Conservation, along with GIS Cell of the state were working out to implement it.

The department has been implementing the MNOOP scheme under NFSM (OS& OP) since 2014-15, he said, adding that “it has covered an area of about 4623 ha along the foothill areas of Mokokchung, Wokha, Mon, Dimapur, Peren and Longleng” so far and that the targeted area coverage during 2021-2022 is 1100 ha.

“The state government is targeting only 15,000 Ha of wastelands for oil palm cultivation. This decision was taken on the basis of actual availability of the cultivable areas. Further, the Shivasa is Company has agreed to procure Fresh Fruits Bunches (FFBs) from the farmers by the 3rd week of September 2021. They have also been asked to set up Oil extraction Mill by August 2022,” the house was informed.

Regarding export of agriculture products, Kronu stated that the Agri and allied departments had organised several meetings and workshop despite the pandemic, and a major consultative and buyer seller meet was held in Dimapur in partnership with APEDA on March 15 this year.

“Under the umbrella of Nagaland State Agriculture Marketing Board (NSAMB), market channels are opening up for export of local products to the metro cities under the brand name of ‘Naturally Nagaland’,” the minister said.

While informing that Naga king chilli was exported to London for the first time in July this year, he said plans were on to export other products like bamboo-shoot, pineapple, kiwi, cardamom, ginger, cucumber, tree tomatoes, etc.

Meanwhile, he mentioned the challenges of huge cost of transportation both in and outside the state.

He further told the house that Naga coffee, which is considered to one of the best in terms of quality, was the first agriculture product from the state to be exported to the international market and has been continuing for the last few years.

“So far about 10,000 ha of coffee have been planted and the state is targeting that by 2030 about 30,000 ha would be covered throughout the length and breadth of the state,” it was informed, adding that the state also export rubber to other states.

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By EMN Updated: Sep 07, 2021 11:51:46 pm