Kohima | August 28
Marking the culmination of the Batch–II projects of Pradhan Mantri Krishi Sinchayee Yojana (PMKSY-WDC) in Nagaland, the Department of Land Resources today conducted a state level watershed conference here at the Capital Convention Centre. Nagaland state is first in the country to complete two batches of PMKSY-WDC Batch -I &II. During 2010-11, a total number of 22 projects (Batch-II) under PMKSY-WDC were implemented by the department of land resources, covering 182 micro-watershed villages spread over 11 districts of Nagaland, covering an area of 83, 082 hectares.
The year 2017 marks the culmination of the Batch II projects, making positive impact on the lives of the farmers in 182 villages where projects have been implemented.
Chief Minister TR Zeliang, in his speech read out on the occasion, lamented that food production in the state is grossly inadequate and has to depend on the import of food grains over 70% of the population in the state is engaged in agriculture.
Minister for PWD (Roads & Bridges) Dr. Neikiesalie (Nicky) Kire read out the speech of the chief minister. In order to encourage the farmers to take up cultivation and other income generation activities such as plantation crops and medicinal & aromatic plants such an alternative farming, the CM stated that the PMKSY has been introduced in the state. PMKSY, to certain extent, had addressed these issues with the introduction of plantation crops such as rubber, cardamom, tea, coffee etc. Through this programme, many unemployed youths have been given support in establishing small scale entrepreneurship and other income generating activities, he said.
In commemoration of the successful completion of PMKSY-WDC Batch-II, Dr. Kire officially released a book on ‘LRD Communiqué’- A special edition. He also handed over Watershed Development Fund (WDF) to the villages of Kohima district.
Parliamentary Secretary for Land Resources & Excise BS Nganlang expressed happiness over the dedicated and committed officials in the department. “Let us make the best use of the available resources and make ourselves self-sufficient,” he added.
Chief Secretary, Pankaj Kumar called on the villagers to adopt the practice of crop diversification and develop resilient agriculture in line with the holistic approach of the department, to reduce the risk involved and suit the same to the market demand. Maintaining that water availability is a problem facing most places of the state he called for development of spring-shed water management projects to solve the problem especially during dry season. He later assured to work out plans for the future career of the officials in the department serving as fixed pay employees.
Land Resources, Director Hoto Yeptho and Kohima DPO Dr. Menuosietuo Tseikha gave an overview of the Nagaland Watershed and overview of Kohima Watershed (PMKSY Batch-II) respectively.
The first batch (Batch-1) of the project sanctioned during 2009-10 in 22 projects covering 1.06 lakh ha at a total cost of Rs. 158.58 crores has been successfully completed. The second batch (Batch II) of the project during 2010-11 has 19 projects which culminated by covering an area of 0.83.lakh ha at a total cost of Rs. 124.62 crores.
Speaking on behalf of Watershed Community of Kohima, watershed community chairman Rumensinyu village apprised that through the assistance of the department, 10% of the villagers have now converted to wet terrace cultivation from jhum cultivation, thus conserving the forest of the village. The Chairman also pointed that the villagers have taken up rubber plantation numbering about 2000 rubber plants, which will be ready for harvest in 2-3 years.
Speaking on behalf of watershed community of Nagaland, watershed committee chairman Yongam village said the villagers have started plantation of large cardamom, beetle nut, including rubber.
70% of the people in the village were poor, unable to build a home and send their children to school, however, the chairman said, with the implementation of the various schemes under the assistance of the department, the economy of the village have improved to large extent.
The programme was chaired by land resources secretary Y. Kikheto Sema, IAS while vote of thanks was proposed by land resources additional director Renben Lotha.
Later, chief secretary inaugurated exhibition stalls of SHGs and livelihood groups. The programme was also marked by display of flexi banners on various activities of the project.