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Agricultural Research and Education

The Department of Agricultural Research and Education (DARE), Ministry of Agriculture provides government support, service and linkage to the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and is responsible for coordinating research and educational activities in the field of agriculture, animal husbandry and fisheries. Also, it helps to bring about interdepartmental and inter-institutional collaboration with national and international agencies engaged in agriculture and allied sectors.

Indian Council of Agricultural Research

The Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) is an apex national organization for conducting and coordinating research and education in agriculture including animal husbandry and fisheries. The Council undertakes research on fundamental and applied aspects in traditional and frontier areas to offer solutions to problems related to conservation and management of resources, productivity improvement of crops, animals and fisheries. It plays a pivotal role in developing new technologies in agriculture and allied sectors and performs the functions of introduction and disseminating it to the end users through its wide network Krishi Vigyan Kendras.

Agricultural Research

The Council has its headquarters at New Delhi and a vast network of institutes all over the country consisting of 49 institutes including 4 national institutes with Deemed to be University status; 6 national Bureau; 17 national Research Centres; 25 Project Directorates; and 61 All India Coordinated Research Projects (AICRPs) and 17 network projects. For higher education in agriculture and allied fields there are 45 State Agricultural Universities and one Central Agricultural University at Imphal besides 4 Deemed to be Universities. The SAUs are provided and developmental grants and the 61 CAUs and Deemed Universities are fully funded by the department.

Research, Education and Extension Activities of the ICAR

The activity spectrum and the highlight of research, education and extension in different fields for 2008-2009 are submitted below:

Crop Sciences

During the year, 33 explorations were undertaken and 2,203 accessions including 784 of wild species were collected. In the National Herbarium of Cultivated Plants, 371 harbarium specimens, 121 seed samples and 21 economic products were added. A total of 25,456 diverse crop accessions were introduced from various countries, and 15,000 accessions, including germplasm from the ICRISAT, were exported to 19 countries. About 13,850 accessions of orthodox and species were added to the National Genebank.

Five varieties of wheat, three of barley and one of triticale have been released. Sixteen wheat genetic stocks showing resistance to different wheat diseases have been registered. Nine hybrids/composites of Maize were released by the Central Variety Release Committee for different agro-climatic regions of the country.

Two varieties of sorghum, viz., CSV 23 a dual purpose Kharif variety and SPV 1626 a rabi variety has been developed. Two finger millet and one little millet variety were released. Short duration Finger millet variety, GPU 48, suitable for cash cropping and season cultivation released for Karnataka, 219 q breeder seed of 47 released varieties/inbred lines were produced.

Pigeonpea varieties viz., Azad (NEPZ), JKM 189 (CZ), LRG 30 and LRG 38 (SZ) were found suitable for delayed planting. Two high yielding varieties, one each of Lentil, Angoori (IPL 406) and of Rajmash, Arun (IPL 98-3-1) were notified for northern states, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Chhattisgarh.

DOR Bt-1, a local isolates of bacillus thuringiensis var kuskaki (H-3a, 3b, 3c) developed for management of castor semi-looper has been registered under the trade name KNOCK W.P. for commercialization with the Central Insecticides Board, Govt. of India DRSH-1, hybrid with high oil content (42-44 %) and yield of 1300-1600 kg/ha has been released the Rabi.

Summer in all sunflower growing area of India. NARI-H-15, a sunflower hybrid having the yield potential of 2200 kg/ha, 28% oil content and tolerance to aphid was released. JSF-99, a variety, moderately resistant to aphid, Alternaria leaf spot released for Madhya Pradesh. DCH-519, and Sugar Shakti, Castor hybrids have been released for all castor growing area. Three improved soyabean varieties namely PS 1347 and PRS 1 (Uttarakhand) and IS 93-60 (Madhya Pradesh) were released.

Bi-cotton variety Bikaneri Nerma and NRH 44 Bt cotton hybrid and Mustard hybrids developed. An economically viable and rapid method for compost production has been developed by Mushroom production using fungi S. thermophilum.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies in cotton was successfully demonstrated in 2,360 ha area of conventional cotton and 605 ha area of Bt cotton in nine cotton growing states all over the country through twelve field centres. Plant health clinics were established at four centres in order to cater to the requirements of knowledge support and demonstration of IPM strategies to the farmers.

Pest Management Information System (PMIS), a computer based retrieval system with complete information on pests and IPM strategies along with the he source of availability of critical inputs was developed for cotton, brinjal and okra. Decision making software (pesticide Advisor) was also developed providing all information on available pesticides.

Taxonomic keys had been developed for the genera and species of Largidae, Pyrrocoridae and Cercopidae. Biosystematie studies leading to morphological characterization and differentiation of Pseudphytoseaphus from Phytosaphus, species of Cleoninae, Pyralidae genus Magaronia were initiated.

Research work at Kerala Agricultural University on stingless bees Trigonairridipermis for honey and pollination of crops resulted in development of earthen pots, bamboo splits and PVC as artificial nest material.

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Source: National Portal Content Management Team, Reviewed on: 07-01-2011