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OUAT’s research on agriculture to be expanded in Odisha

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Bhubaneswar: In a bid to make Odisha self dependent in crops and food grains, Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology (OUAT) decided to expand its research in other districts.

The research will be made in districts to provide quality seeds of pulses, paddy, maize and wheat to the farmers. The programmes are undertaken to double the farmers’ income in the State by 2022, said OUAT vice chancellor Prof Surendranath Pasupalak.

In view of shortage of pulses every year in Odisha, the districts — Ganjam, Mayurbhanj, Deogarh, Kalahandi and Keonjhar will be the hubs for pulses. Further, the hubs will be expanded to four other districts, he said.

As most of the crop fields are found vacant after paddy cultivation, research are being conducted to motivate farmers to grow pulses including peas, masoor (red lentils), chana (chickpeas) on the vacant farmland.

While Centre has provided Rs 30 lakh for research on pulse farming, Odisha government has allocated Rs 2.25 crore for the research.

Focusing on the paddy research, initiatives have been taken for development of more productive aromatic paddy seeds, development of local aromatic paddy seeds, preparing digital atlas on local varieties of moong (green gram) and urad (black gram), sensor based irrigation programme for more profitable crops and setting up of geo-spatial technology centre for identification of resources.

In view of the malnutrition issues in several districts of the State, OUAT will conduct research on nutritional crops in malnutrition-hit Nagada village in Jajpur district and tribal districts including Gajapati, Koraput, Nuapada, Phulbani, Rayagada and Kalahandi.