Who makes agri policy in India?
Why agri universities are not contributing to agriculture policy making?

Yes, a humble farmer from Nalanda is reported to have cultivated an average rice yield of 22.4 tonne per hectare and that had driven the entire agri science community into a tizzy!

There is the comparative rice yield map released by FAO wherein we find that the average yields in Australia (10.1 tonnes) US (7.5), China (6.5) Bangladesh 4.2) India (3.3) and from Nalanda, Bihar it is put as 22.4 tonnes!

This claim is now hotly contested, among others, from a rice scientists and experts from China. “It is 120 per cent a fake claim” says Professor Yuan Long Ping (82), hailed as the father of the ‘hybrid rice’ in China.

Five farmers from Bihar had all individually grown more rice per hectare than the ‘world record’ of 19.4 tonnes per hectare in China- the best figure so far being 22.4 tonnes per hectare. The Chinese scientists said that he would believe the claim if the record production is repeated.

Of course he had reasons to be skeptical, especially in a field like agriculture and also in a claim like this.

There is of course a great deal of skepticism all around and therefore we also see there is a great silence all around, in the ICAR and also in the agri universities and research centers and also in the official side, in the agri establishment, a group of high profile agri scientists, some of whom are claiming to be the fathers of the Green Revolution and all others who are very active in NGOs and in the international jet set Green movements and other agriculturally relevant fields.

Now comes the news, from all places, from Cornell University which has a world-reputed agriculture sciences department.

Prof.Norman Uphoff, Professor Emeritus, the Department of Government and Agriculture has said that the Indian claims of high agri productivity from Bihar farmers who had adopted the Madagascar-origin  SRI( System of Rice Intensification) technique adopted for the first time in 2010-11,though the SRI  has been adopted in TN and other states for some time.

The SRI is from Madagascar, which was first initiated by a French priest there in 1983 and since then, we must imagine, the SRI must have been followed in other countries as well.

But why then there was no news or comments about the SRI so far? Why Prof.Uphoff suddenly makes this news that had been reported in the Cornell Sun, the Cornell city daily newspaper.

Our course our staffs are at Prof.Uphoff’s office for an interview. Let us wait for what he has got to say on this discovery and a controversy of not any ordinary kind.

The discovery and as Prof.Uphoff has already said about the non-genetic character of the new system of cultivation, management of the soil and the sun and the environment and other factors that had given this conventional seed type this new and unexpected  vigour and yield potential.

Image Source : www.nytimes.com

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