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Call for increasing acreage under pulses

Call for increasing acreage under pulses

May 19, 2019


Vice-President M. Venkaiah Naidu has called for increasing the acreage and productivity of pulses for achieving self-sufficiency, and urged agricultural universities to step up research towards that goal.


Inaugurating the Indian Council of Agricultural Research’s (ICAR) All India Coordinated Research Group’s annual meeting on cultivation of MULLaRP (Mungbean, Urdbean, Lentil, Lathyrus, Rajmash and Pea) and Arid Legumes, in Guntur on Sunday, Mr. Venkaiah Naidu stressed the need for bringing additional fallow lands under pulses production, which were an inexpensive source of plant-based proteins, vitamins and minerals for the people.He stated that pulses would provide green, nutritious fodder for animals and also enrich the soil through biological nitrogen fixation.


Medicinal value

“Some legumes are known to have medicinal and therapeutic properties. Hence, they are rightly termed as ‘unique jewels’ of Indian crop husbandry,” he observed. Legumes were an essential component in the Indian cropping pattern, especially in dryland farming, Mr. Naidu said, pointing out that India was the world’s largest producer of pulses, accounting for 34% of the area and 24% of production, followed by Myanmar, Canada, China, Nigeria, Brazil and Australia.Agricultural universities, Krishi Vigyan Kendras and the governments must come together with long-term strategies for producing new high-yielding varieties, which were resilient to diseases and climate change.


Healthy diet

Underscoring the important role of pulses in promoting a healthy diet, Mr. Naidu cautioned the people, particularly youth, against eating junk food in the wake of growing incidence of non-communicable diseases.He sought priority for increasing the per-capita availability of pulses and bringing down their prices for the consumers. Greater attention should be paid to harvesting the potential of summer pulses in the Indo-Gangetic plains and rice fallows, he added. ICAR Deputy Director General A.K. Singh, Acharya N.G. Ranga Agricultural University Vice-Chancellor V. Damodara Naidu and Indian Institute of Pulses Research (Kanpur) Director N.P. Singh were present.





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