Unplanned Decisions

May 18, 2017 0 Comments EDITORIAL 304 Views
Unplanned Decisions

While the government of Jammu and Kashmir is talking several measures to revamp the Horticulture Department, however certain unplanned decisions create more confusion in the sector than any good. Ironically, the minister who was recently assigned the portfolio went on the protest leave, citing horticulture as the “less important portfolio.” The Department always and every regime remains department with less attraction despite being the major contributory department in the State’s economy. There are many other sectors including Animal, Sheep Husbandry and Fisheries which crave for the attention of the government. However the unplanned decisions taken on the policy level derail the prospectus of the departments and hamper their growth. Minister for Horticulture Syed Basharat Ahmed Bukhari recently stressed the need of revamping and revitalizing the horticulture sector as it forms the backbone of the State’s economy. The Minister was speaking at a high-level meeting he convened regarding Celebration of 2017 as ‘Apple Year’ as announced by the Chief Minister on the occasion of launch of High Density Plantation Scheme in February this year. He directed the concerned to draw forward-looking roadmaps through perspective planning for improving quality and production of Horticulture crops by integrated implementation of viable, eco-friendly, validated and refined technologies. He further asked the officers to prepare a visionary document in the form of a Horticulture Policy for next 20 years. The Minister also stressed that traditional varieties of Apple like Amburr, Malmohi, Kiser, Razaqwar, and Golden Delicious be also promoted as well as high density apple plantation. While such steps should be lauded, but the unplanned and ill conceived projects mar these dream projects. We have a major problem of cold storage in the State and the Minister without addressing that issue on strengthening the high density plantation across the State. There should be proper infrastructure for storage of fruits and establishment of Plant Health clinics in the state. The Horticulture Department should explore the possibility for establishing more testing labs and fruit packaging units. He further directed the concerned for taking innovative and concrete measures for making all fruit related cooperative institutions functional. Horticulture Department is one of the backbone departments of the State and the Government must take all possible measures to achieve the objectives to enhance the production and productivity of quality apple fruit crops in the State to compete in the national and international markets with highest employment opportunities in the sector. There must be proper grading, branding of the quality of the fruits and directed for organizing exhibitions across the major cities of India and aboard.

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