Bhubaneswar: The ICAR-Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture, a constituent of Indian Council of Agricultural Research and a premier institute for research in freshwater aquaculture in association with Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Khordha observed Rashtriya Mahila Kisan Divas today. Rural women contribute immensely toward food production system. This day is also being celebrated as International Day of Rural Women to recognize the role of rural women in agriculture and rural development. Besides conducting high end research leading to development of technologies for enhancing fish production, this Institute is also active in training of stakeholder and dissemination of technologies to end users. Promotion of aquaculture for strengthening livelihood of poor, gender mainstreaming, capacity-building of women in aquaculture has been a priority area for ICAR-CIFA, said Dr J. K. Sundaray, Director (Acting), ICAR-CIFA, Bhubaneswar.
As a part of this Celebration this Institute organized Kisan Gosthi, in which over 100 farmers including 70 women took part. Production related problems of farmers were addressed by this scientists and experts.
Prof. Padmaja Mishra, Vice chancellor, Ramadevi Women’s University graced the occasion as Chief Guest and felicitated five women farmers who had achieved exemplary success in aquaculture. She appreciated the efforts of ICAR-CIFA and KVK in developing women entrepreneurs and helped them realize their potential. She hailed the efforts of Babuni Sahoo and Santilata Bhoi who has taken up scientific ways of farming and become role model. Dr. V P Chahal, Asstt. Director General (Agricultural Extension) ICAR, New Delhi was the guest of honour. Women are the backbone of agriculture. Their role in household food and nutrition security becomes more crucial when the male counterpart migrates to urban areas. Research institutes should generate women friendly technologies and focus on eradicating hidden hunger . Dr Chahal cited the example of Smt. Krishna Yadav of Delhi , a daily labourer who once sold pickles at the roadside now owns an enterprise having 100 products with annual turn over of Rs 4 crore.
Dr(Mrs.) Kasturi Samantray, former Dean, Fisheries College, OUAT and Dr (Mrs.) K D Mahapatra, Chairman, Women Cell, ICAR-CIFA shared their views on contribution of women in agriculture. Dr ( Mrs.) P K Sahoo, Principal Scientist proposed vote of thanks.