Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, today inaugurated the College and Administration buildings of Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University, Jhansi, Uttar Pradesh through video conferencing. He interacted with the students of the university.
PM congratulated everyone and expressed hope that students after graduating from this university will actively contribute in empowering the country’s agriculture sector. He hoped that new facilities provided due to the new building would encourage and motivate students to work harder.
Invoking Rani Lakshmi Bai’s quote that “I will not give my Jhansi”, Prime Minister urged the people of Jhansi and Bundelkhand to make Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan a success.
Prime Minister noted that agriculture had a major role to contribute in Aatmanirbhar Bharat Abhiyan. He said, self reliance in agriculture targets at making farmers both – producer as well as entrepreneur. PM said in line with this spirit, several historic agricultural reforms were taken. Just like other industries, now farmers can also sell their produce anywhere in the country, wherever they fetch better prices. He said a special dedicated fund of Rs 1 lakh crore has been set up for providing better facilities and promoting industries in a cluster based approach.
Saying that steady efforts are continuing to connect farming with modern technology, the Prime Minister noted that research institutions and agricultural universities have a vital role to play. He said now there are three Central agricultural universities in the country, compared to just one six years ago. Besides this, three more national institutions viz. IARI Jharkhand, IARI Assam and Mahatma Gandhi Institute for Integrated Farming in Motihari, Bihar are also being established. He remarked that these institutes will not only give new opportunities to the students, but will also help in increasing their capacity, in providing technology benefits to the local farmers.
In an effort of outgoing Manmohan Singh government, Rani Lakshmi Bai Central Agricultural University Act was passed by both the houses of parliament on March 5, 2014. The university commenced academics from 2014-15 batch, functioning with a temporary campus at ICAR-Indian Grassland and Fodder Research Institute, Jhansi.
Speaking on the inauguration, the PM sought the cooperation of the universities in developing the ecosystem to streamline the flow of knowledge and expertise from campus to agriculture fields.
Stressing on the need to take knowledge related to agriculture and its practical application to school level, the Prime Minister said efforts are to introduce the Agriculture subject at middle school level in villages. It will have two benefits- one, it will develop agriculture related understanding in the students and secondly, it will enable the students to give information about agriculture, its modern farming techniques and marketing, to their family members. This will promote agro-entrepreneurship in the country, he added.