Farmer's Training Programme

NABARD sponsored Training Camp

Farmer's Training Programme

5-days training program was organised at the premises of Eternal University under the   NABARD sponsored project entitled “Integrated Farming System with Allied Sectors for Socio-economic Upliftment of Rural Farmer Families of Himachal Pradesh”. In this program demonstration was given to the farmers on Integrated Farming Model (IFS) at University farm. IFS represent an appropriate combination of farm enterprises. The waste material of one enterprise is used as input for the productive functioning of other enterprise. This is an effective strategy in raising incomes, generating employment and alleviating poverty among small and marginal farmers. The training was given on enterprises as dairy farming, vermicomposting, silage making, horticultural/agricultural farming, food processing and water harvesting. It will impart awareness and new learnings to the local farmers of this area. These trainings were for 05 days with 40 participants and also including one day exposure visit to UHF, Nauni.

Day 1 encompassed the inaugural session and was held on 7 September, 2021. The programme began with registration of the farmers. Dr Neelam Thakur, Assistant Professor, Department of Zoology gave the welcome address with a brief introduction to the project and IFS model. The advantage of the IFS model was discussed in the opening session with emphasis on the 6 enterprises- dairy farming, vermicomposting, silage making, horticultural/agricultural farming, food processing and water harvesting. A detailed plan of the lectures and practical training to be conducted in the upcoming days was also discussed.

Day 2- The first lecture was delivered by Dr. Krishan Kumar (Associate Professor, Food Technology) on Dairy farming. It was an introductory lecture to dairy farming which included the subsidiaries given by government, different breeds of cow, varied milking techniques and equipment, diseases in the animals and their management. After the lecture various questions were put on by the farmers regarding the breeds of cow and milking problems. The second lecture was given by Dr. Sushma Sharma (Assistant Professor, Plant Pathology) on the different crops (Horticultural/Agricultural) which can be grown near the IFS model and their pest management. The lecture gave insights to the different diseases of five main crops of the area- tomato, potato, peas, ginger and beans. Also suggestions were given to the farmers for the successful management of these diseases in their fields. The lecture was highly applauded by the farmers and many questions related to different diseases in the crop were asked. After the lunch there was field visit to the established IFS models in the University. The first model was dairy farming –Akal Modern Dairy. In this the different breeds of cows were shown to the farmers and the milking technique through the vacuum pump was shown. The farmers were given practical trainings for milking techniques. The next model was Silage unit- in this the process of making silage and use of chafer cutter was demonstrated by Dr. Neelam Thakur  and Dr. Mahesh Tripathi and the already prepared silage using oats was shown to the farmers. The last model for the day was Vermicomposting unit- in which the established vermicompost unit was shown. The process of making vermicompost was practically shown to the farmers by the experts and their queries were answers by Dr. Neelam Thakur and Dr. Priyanka Thakur

Day 3- On this day first session included lecture on food processing and practical hands on training in food processing unit of the University. The farmers were taught to make tomato puree, apple jam, puff corns, cake, noodles and pasta by the experts from Department of Food Technology. The farmers had thoroughly enjoyed the process and had asked several questions related to food processing and packaging. In the evening session practical hands on training of silage making was given to the farmers by Dr. Neelam Thakur. This session was particularly demanded by the farmers after visiting the silage unit the day before. 

Day 4- There was an exposure visit to Dr. Y. S. Parmar University, Nauni. The 40 participant were accompanied by Dr. Neelam Thakur, Dr. Praneet Chauhan and Rupinder Kaur, Ex-gram Pradhan. At the Nauni University different Departments of Horticulture and Floriculture were shown to the farmers. Dr. Rashmi Negi Extension Officer at UHF Nauni received the farmers at 10:30 am, after that farmer visited Vegetable Science (fields) near the University Gate. Dr. Kuldeep Thakur, Professor Vegetable Science, acquainted the farmers about the importance of crop rotation and how to grow the tomato nursery in healthy beds. Dr. Rashmi Negi made the farmers familiar with different varieties of field, indoor and outdoor flowers. Dr. Bharti Kashyap, Associate Professor, Floriculture and Landscaping gave information on value-addition in dry flowers and how to link farmers to the market.  After lunch Dr. Pancy Thakur, Assistant Professor, Forestry, manifested Herbal garden at UHF Nauni and imparted knowledge regarding locally available medicinal plant to the farmers. Dr. Vishal Rana, Professor, Fruit Science, demonstrated Kiwi fruit orchard to the farmers and also conveyed information related to spacing, pruning, training system and varieties of Kiwi. 

Day 5- The day began with the lectures on Rainwater Harvesting by Dr. Mahesh Tripathi followed by Dr. Priyanka Thakur and Dr. Praneet Chauhan. The last lecture was delivered by Dr. Neelam Thakur on the IFS model. After the lectures the valedictory functions begun. The chief guest for the function was Mrs. Sonakshi Singh Tomar, ADC Nahan. The dignitaries present on the stage were Hon’able Vice Chancellor Dr. Davinder Singh, Hon’able Pro Vice Chancellor Prof A.S. Ahluwalia, Dean of Research, Dr. N. P. Singh, Dr. Kanwaljit Kaur Ahluwalia, Rupinder Kaur, Ex Gram Pradhan and Dr. Neelam Thakur, Principal Investigator (PI) of the project. The ceremony was commenced with the welcome of Chief Guest with memento by Hon Vice Chancellor Dr. Davinder Singh. The recap and summary of the events was given by Dr. Neelam Thakur, PI of the project. In the welcome address by Hon Pro Vice Chancellor Prof A. S. Ahluwalia encouraged the farmers to utilize the new developments of research in enhancing their means of livelihood. Also he announced a cash prize of rupees 10,000/- for the “Farmer of the Year Award” to those who would opt sustainable method and perform well according to certain criteria given by the experts. The chief guest in her address to the farmers she talked about the importance of food processing and raised concerns over the deteriorating environment. Also she praised such training programs as these help in women empowerment and sustainability goals. In the closing remarks Hon’able Vice Chancellor thanked the farmers and gave the assurance of helping them with IFS models whenever needed.  The feedback was also recorded from the farmers and in this regards the Ex BDC of the area Mr. Sajan Singh expressed his gratitude towards the Kalgidhar Trust and University for their efforts made in the direction of upliftment of farmers. Also Mrs. Anjana Kumari, another participant applauded the training program for imparting knowledge pertaining to different techniques of IFS model. She stated these programs will be help in enhancing their means of livelihood as well as in the women empowerment. This programme was sponsored by National Agriculture Bank for Rural Development (NABARD) Shimla Himachal Pradesh. This programme was convened under the dynamic coordinatorship of Dr. Neelam Thakur Assistant Professor and Head, Department of Zoology, Eternal University Baru Sahib. Other Coordinators of this programme include Dr. Priyanka Thakur (Entomology), Dr. Mahesh Tripathi (Agricultural Engineering) and Dr. Krishan Kumar (Food Technology).

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