Kishan Ghosthi organised at Akaipur village, North 24 Parganas, West Bengal on 13-01-2017

ICAR-CIFRI organised a Kishan-Ghosthi on 13th January, 2017 at Akaipur Gram Panchayat for farmers of Akaipur and surrounding villages under Bangaon block of Norh 24 Parganas district of West Bengal. The programme was planned under Mera Gaon Mera Gaurav (MGMG) programme in collaboration with ICAR-National Aquatic Surveillance Programme on Aquatic Animal Diseases (NASPAD) and ICAR-National Innovations on Climate Resilient Agriculture (NICRA). More than sixty farmers of the five villages of Akaipur Panchayat adopted for MGMG programme participated in the ghosti. Smt. Minati Saha, Pradhan and Shri Subhas Saha Ex-Pradhan of Akaipur Gram Panchayat; Shri Mahadev Ghosh, Krishi Prajukti Sahayak (KPS) of the village were present on the occasion. From CIFRI Dr. B.P. Mohanty, HoD of FREM Division; Dr. U.K. Sarkar, HoD of REF Division; Dr. A.K. Das, Principal Scientist and In-Charge of Extension & Training Cell; Dr. S.K. Nag, Principal Scientist; Dr. B.K. Behara, Principal Scientist; Dr.Arun Pandit, Principal Scientist; Shri Raju Baitha, Scientist participated in the event. The main objectives of this ghosthi was i) to apprise the farmers about MGMG programme urging them to take maximum benefit out of it, ii) to sensitise the farmers about the potential and profitability of scientific composite fish culture, and apprising them about various fish diseases and their management, iii) to create awareness about climate change and its impact on agriculture in general and fishery in particular.

A village pond of about 0.25 ha was adopted for demonstration of composite fish culture to the farmers under MGMG programme. Water sample of the pond was tested for various physico-chemical parameters and advices were also given on the required water and soil quality for scientific fish production. Liming material was also distributed to the farmers.

Dr. Arun Pandit welcomed the farmers and members of the Panchayat in the ghosti. Dr. S.K. Nag described the purpose of MGMG work and requested them to participate in the interaction whenever the team visits the villages. He also discussed some of the farming related issues of the villages like poor organic matter status and acidity of the soils, lack of proper information about use of plant protection chemicals etc. Dr. B.P. Mohanty discussed about benefits of fish, particularly SIFs in providing nutritional security and urged the farmers to grow more fish. The emerging issue on climate change and its impact on inland fisheries and adaptation strategies were discussed by Dr. U.K. Sarkar. Both Prdhan and Ex-Pradhan of Akaipur Panchayat appreciated the efforts initiated by CIFRI for sensitization and awareness creation among the farming community of the adopted villages and urged the farmers to listen and take necessary steps for their own benefits. They also assured all possible help from their side for this type of programmes to be organised by CIFRI in future. Shri Mahadev Ghosh, KPS, addressed the farmers and described various schemes of the State Government like Soil Health Card, farmer’s fare and exhibition etc. Dr. A.K. Das discussed about soil and water quality management and Dr. B.K. Behara made a power point presentation on scientific composite fish culture and fish disease management.

In the end, there was question-answer session where farmers asked several questions particularly regarding management of pond, availability of fish seeds etc. The questions were answered by the scientists. The programme could generate much interest and many farmers seemed willing to undertake composite fish farming and bring more ponds/waterbodies under fish production.

The ghosthi was successfully organised with the help of Shri Sujit Chowdhury, Senior Technical Officer; Shri Ashim Jana, Sr. Technician; research scholars of NASPAD project with active support of many members and staff of Akaipur Gram Panchayat.