Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Radha Mohan Singh laid foundation stone of Agricultural Technology Application and Research Institute (ATARI) at Patna.
In his address, the minister said, till today a total of eight Agricultural Technology Application and Research Institutes, erstwhile Zonal Project Directorates are functioning in the country. This number is not sufficient for effective monitoring of 642 Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) across the country. Hence, the Government has taken a decision to increase their number to eleven. In this line, a new ATARI will monitor 62 KVKs, 38 in Bihar and 24 in Jharkhand. Very soon additional six KVKs will start functioning in the identified larger districts of Bihar. Then the ATARI will have 68 KVKs under its supervision and monitoring. These KVKs will also be the part of oilseed and pulses programmes to alleviate the deficiencies of these commodities in the region.
Earlier, Dr. Ashok Kumar Singh, DDG, Agriculture Extension, Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) welcomed the minister and briefed on functioning of ATARI.
Dr. RK Mittal, Vice Chancellor, Rajendra Agriculture University, Pusa, Bihar and participants from different Government organisations were present on the occasion. A big number of scientists and officers from ICAR Institutes, KVKs and farmers also participated in the ceremony.