March 9, 2018
COIMBATORE: Tamil Nadu Agricultural University(TNAU) Vice-Chancellor Dr. K. Ramasamy on Friday advocated for reforms in the functioning of extension system, particularly in promoting public-private partnership, networking of markets and assessing farmers loan taking behaviour.
In his inaugural address to the two-day international conference on Invigorating Transformation of Farm Extension towards Sustainable Development: Futuristic Challenges and Prospects (INTFES-18), Ramasamy appreciated the important role played by extension scientists and extension workers in increasing the food grain production of the country, despite reduced land, labour and water.
“However, reforms in the functioning of the extension system need to be introduced,” he said.”Due to water stress conditions in the Delta region, extension agents need to give specific crop recommendations on alternate crops and not just generic recommendations, he said.
In this digital era the use of drones in the service sector is increasing in developed countries, which needs to be utilized in the agricultural sector also, especially for monitoring ecological changes,” he added.
Ramasamy launched the Open Access Journal of Extension Education, a free access journal which will be available in www.extensioneducation.org by students, scientist, researcher and extension workers.
In his address, NABARD Chief General Manager Dr. S N A Jinnah pointed out agricultural extension system is undergoing a paradigm shift in India. “Earlier, extension was involved in ‘lab to land’ programmes intensively, whereas nowadays, new category of farmers as ‘Farmer Scientists’ are being encouraged by the extension system,” he said.
He said that 80 per cent of the ground water has been exploited in Tamil Nadu and many wells, tanks and rivers are vanishing in the state due to or exploitation and poor management.
About 300 delegates comprising Extension Scientists, Research Scholars and Extension Professionals from different parts of the world are attending the Conference, organised by Extension Education Society.