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Organic farming to be promoted to clean the Ganga

Asanna Gonmei |

The Union Water Resources Ministry on Friday signed an MoU with the Agriculture Ministry to promote organic farming on the banks of the river Ganga.

As per the MoU, villagers residing in 1,657 villages along the river, starting from Uttarakhand to West Bengal, will be encouraged to adopt organic farming.

As per the agreement under the ‘Namami Gange’ project, each gram panchayat will be treated as a cluster under the Paramparagat Krishi Vikas Yojana (PKVY) and will be provided training on Integrated Nutrient Management and micro-irrigation techniques by the Agriculture Ministry, an official source said.

Union Water Resources Minister Uma Bharti and Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh attended the MoU signing event.

"Signing of this MoU will ensure effective and efficient implementation of various projects of ‘Namami Gange’ in coordination with the Agriculture Ministry," Uma Bharti said.

"I hope the Agriculture Ministry will play a major role in the success of ‘Namami Gange’ programme," she added. 

The agreement also says that all related information will be provided through mobile applications and awareness will be spread about the side-effects of using chemicals, fertilisers and insecticides in farming.

Radha Mohan Singh said in order to train farmers in organic farming, the government plans to launch ‘Deen Dayal Unnat Krishi Shiksha Abhiyan’ on September 25, marking the birth centenary of Jan Sangh ideologue Deen Dayal Upadhyaya.

"We want to train 15,000 farmers in organic farming in 2016 across the country through Indian Council of Agricultural Research. The government wants to ensure that there is a drop in input costs, while the income of farmers goes up," Singh said.

The progress of the implementation of this the will be monitored by a steering committee consisting of the nodal officers from each ministry. The committee will meet periodically, sources said.

Minister of State for Water Resources Sanjeev Balyan and senior officials attended the programme.