CUO inaugurates two-day International Conference on “Recent Advances of Biodiversity and Agriculture for a Sustainable Future”

A two-day International Conference on “Recent Advances of Biodiversity and Agriculture for a Sustainable Future” was inaugurated on 19 April 2024 in the main campus of the University, organised by the Department of Biodiversity & Conservation of Natural Resources, CUO. Hon’ble Vice-Chancellor of the University and Chief Patron of the International Conference Prof. Chakradhar Tripathi inaugurated the Conference. Others present on the dais were Dr. Sarat Kumar Pradhan, Additional Director General, Crop Science, ICAR (Indian Council of Agricultural Research), New Delhi as the Chief Guest; Prof. Saroj Kant Barik, Former Director, NBRI (National Botanical Research Institute), Lucknow, and Professor of Botany, NEHU, Shillong; Prof. S.P. Adhikary, Former Vice-Chancellor of F.M. University and reputed Plant Scientist; Prof. Amarendra Narain Mishra, Former Vice-Chancellor of Khallikote University, Berhampur as the Guests of Honour. Prof. N.C. Panda, In-charge Registrar and Finance Officer of the University, Prof. Sharat Kumar Palita, Dean, School of Biodiversity & Conservation of Natural Resources and Chairman of the Conference, Dr. Debabrata Panda, Convener-cum-Organising Secretary of the Conference and Dr. Kakoli Banerjee, Co-convener.

Speaking on the occasion Vice-Chancellor Prof. Chakradhar Tripathi said that India and Biodiversity are interrelated to each other since the Vedic Period. In ancient times we used to conserve our biodiversity system very systematically. The world health system is deteriorating and the cause is we are not following our traditional practices. Our society always is a mixture of culture and ecology. Our perception towards ecosystem was superb, now it’s time to revive our tradition. We have to revive the traditional pattern of conserving ecosystem and biodiversity and should follow the old principle of ‘Live and let Live’, he urged. Prof. Sharat Kumar Palita delivered the welcome address and explained the purpose of the Conference. This area is best suited to the study of biodiversity that’s why this Conference is meaningful, he said. He hoped that the emergence of four new departments like Agricultural Sciences, Dairying and Animal Husbandry, Forestry Management and Supply & Chain Management will enhance the development of agriculture and allied sector in Koraput.

The Chief Guest Prof. Sarat Kumar Pradhan said that unless there is no diversity and deviation, development is not possible. So the role of conservation and diversity is important for the society. If we want to reach the Vikshit Bharat @2047, we must conserve our biodiversity, he said. India is advancing in food grain production and other allied production, but we have to utilise more resources for more production, he said. Prof. S. K. Barik delivered the Key note address on the topic ”Biodiversity and Agricultural Research in India for Sustainable Development Advances and Future Agenda”. In his address he described the rich agricultural heritage of India since 11 thousand years. Prof. A.N. Mishra hailed the University for organising such a befitting Conference. He hoped that this Conference Proceedings will bring fruitful results, he hoped. Prof. Adhikari told that Koraput is the best place for biodiversity research. The subject of biodiversity subject is studied nowhere in the Indian Universities. Prof. N.C. Panda said that Indian traditional system is best system in the world so far as agricultural development is concerned. He cited the example of Krishi Parashar of our ancient purana where it is mentioned about agriculture. Since then, we practise agriculture. Prof. Debabrata Panda, Convener of the Conference welcomed all the members and gave the introductory note. Dr. Kakoli Banerjee delivered the Vote of Thanks and coordinated the Inaugural programme. Others present on the occasion was Prof. V.C. Jha, Consultant Academics of CUO, Prof. M.K. Satapathy, Dr. Bologun Shamsudeen Tamiwa from Nigeria, Prof. M. Vetriventhan and other dignitaries, faculty members, students and research scholars.

On the occasion, two eminent people from Koraput were felicitated for their contribution to biodiversity conservation and agriculture in the locality. They are Shri Netrananda Lenka, a reputed agriculturist-cum-conservationist of Patraput Village, and Smt. Raimati Ghiuria for her contribution to millet conservation.

The two-day Conference will consist of five technical sessions where Professors and Scientists from Universities and research institutions within the country and outside will present papers. Faculties and research scholars of different institutions will also present their research findings through poster presentations. To highlight the importance of the Koraput region for its rich biodiversity and agricultural heritage, a Millet Exhibition was also organised with the participation of various NGOs of Koraput.

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