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Home > City Resources > Industrial > National Agricultural Fair

The venue
Ever since the World Trade Organisation (WTO) rules and regulations came into force, agriculture products from different European and Asian countries have been dumped into the Indian market at cheaper rates. These cheaper products are posing a threat to indigenously produced agricultural commodities and products, making our farmers helpless. How to counter this threat? And how to get maximum benefits from the WTO regulations were the main objectives of the National Agricultural Fair, conducted by Acharya NG Ranga Agricultural University (ANGRAU) from
1-4 March, 2001 at the university campus at Rajendra Nagar in Hyderabad.

The inauguration ceremonyMr Vadde Shobhanadreeshwara Rao, Minister for Agriculture, inaugurated the fair on 1st March 2001. In his inaugural speech he said, "There is no reason to blame anybody for the present situation. To benefit from the open world markets, we have to join the WTO, otherwise our other exports like Jute and Tobacco might be affected. We are facing tough competition from other countries in food grain sector. To counter this, we need to upgrade our skills, minimise the production costs by embracing the modern technologies in agriculture and other related fields. To impart the knowledge of the modern techniques, the government is planning to broadcast farm-related programmes using the KU-band facility."

Escort's Crop TigerDr Yalamanchili Shivaji, Member, Agricultural University Board, criticised the central government for neglecting the agricultural sector, which is contributing about 50 per cent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). But, on the other hand, he supported the government on drawing loans from the World Bank. "India is the founder member of the World Bank and has every right to take loans from the Bank," he said. Agricultural University Vice-chancellor
Dr I V Subba Rao
said, "The University decided to conduct the Fair to provide proper guidance on the modern and cost-effective agricultural practices and products to the small and medium scale farmers. With these methods, the production costs are minimised to compete with the products dumped into our country with the WTO regulations, which have cheaper prices."

Innovative Farmer - Narasimha Raju Yadav In accordance with the theme of the fair, there were more than 100 stalls exhibiting modern farm implements, pesticides, hybrid seeds, poultry, fisheries and dairy-related products. Escorts Farm Equipment Division displayed an innovative paddy harvesting machine called Crop Tiger. The 'crop tiger' helps the farmers to reap the crop even in the water logged fields. While the 'crop tiger' is useful for large farms, there were a number of such machines based on power tiller technology, useful for small and medium farmers. Vishwakarma Industries displayed Multicrop Thresher, useful for paddy, maize and sunflower.Other agricultural machines at the fair included Groundnut pods strimmer, paddy row seeder, wetland leveller and silt-removing crane.

India has a variety of breeds and genetic resources of different plants in agriculture. By protecting and improving these genetic resources, we can produce high yielding varieties with lower cost. National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources advised the farmers to prepare their own seeds with the help of agricultural departments to overcome the WTO varieties. The winner of Jagjivan Ram Kisan Puraskar and National Innovative Farmer,
Mr G Narasimha Raju Yadav, who produced 82 bags of paddy per acre, participated in the Fair to share his success secrets. He advised the visitors to use organic manure and bio-fertilisers instead of chemical pesticides.

Murra breed BuffaloesPoultry, dairy and fisheries have been closely associated with the agriculture and complementing the incomes of the farmers. The government organisations and various departments in Agricultural University related to poultry and dairy participated in the fair. Project Directorate on Poultry, which takes up research on poultry, introduced the Vanaraja variety of dual purpose bird for rural and tribal areas. The animal husbandry farm of the university, exhibited various types of high-yielding varieties like Quail birds and Murra buffaloes. On the whole, the big stall by AP Horticultural Department was the cynosure of the fair with all varieties of fresh vegetables, fruits and flowers. About 5,000 farmers from Hyderabad, Rangareddy, Mahaboob Nagar, Nalgonda and Medak visited the fair and clarified their doubts with experts.
Mohan G Jagan
Photographs by K P Devadasan

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