NAMSAI- Deputy Chief Minister, Chowna Mein chaired a meeting on Policy Frame Work for Livelihood Development, Employment & Income Generation in Arunachal Pradesh through support to the Plantation sector at District Secretariat, Namsai today.
In his initial remark, Mein said that the State having the highest land bank in the Himalayan Region with favourable agro-climatic zone for growing various crops including plantation crops like Tea, Arecanut, etc need to have a Policy Frame Work on Plantation Crops. He said that unuse land mass can also be brought under plantation crops for livelihood development, employment and income generation.
He said that it may also help in rejuvenation of the forest resources besides serving as a source of income. He further said that huge Arecanut plantations are coming up in the eastern belt of the State and asked the officers from agriculture & allied departments to suggest more plantation crops for taking up under the policy. He also called upon the departmental officers to monitor the growth of the saplings they have supplied to the farmers and to see that it has actually been grown and yielding fruits or not.
Commissioner (Planning), P S Lokhande suggested to take up a new scheme in the manner of Atma Nirbhar Kishi/Bhagwani in the coming budget wherein plantation crops can be taken up. He, however, suggested to increase the production to sizable amount of our valued crops like Kiwi, etc in order to meet the demands of the fruits from outside the State informing that there are large demands of the Arunachal kiwi but we are not able to meet their demands.
Dr A C Barbora, Chief Scientist(retired), CRS, Assam Agriculture University Jorhat while presenting a draft policy on Tea and Arecanut Plantation informed that out of the total 83,74,300 ha of geographical area of the State; 67,25,000 ha is categorized under forest land and only 4,23,000 ha is categorized as cultivable land in the State, Out of which, only half of the area (2,12,000 ha) is reported as net sown area. He informed that additional 4,66,581 ha area could be brought under cultivation increasing the total cultivated area to 6,78,851 ha.
He said that successful implementation of the policy would result in large-scale generation of livelihood, employment & farmers’ income is expected. There would be a significant increase in per capita income and GDP of the State. Development of livelihood & employment will result in a sustainable management framework for maintaining the ecosystem health with reduced pressure on forest resources and enhanced flow of goods and services, he proposed.
He also informed that Govt. only needs to provide financial, technical & administrative support in select activities for 1-5 ha area per farmer. The number of farmer & the size of the area per farmer in different districts would be decided by a “State Level Implementation Committee”, if the draft policy is adopted.
Meeting was also attended by ADC Namsai, S Mining, DPO, DFO, DAO, DHO, Sr Scientist from KVK among others.