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The ICAR-NBPGR has organized a Plant Genetic Resources Conservation Awareness cum Farmers Fair on 17th November, 2023 at Borjuli Village, Rangapara block of Sonitpur District in Assam. This programme was organized at “Biodiversity Heritage” site of wild rice (Oryza rufipogon) involving the Biodiversity Management Committee and Gram Panchayat of Borjuli under the NEH Scheme. The programme was attended by 152 farmers of 8 villages including stake holders of BHS, of wild rice. Welcome of the farmers, guests and invited speakers was done by Sh. OP Dhariwal (NBPGR). He also highlighted the ICAR-NBPGR, mandate and activities, genebank holdings and role in conservation and supply of PGR. Dr. Dinku Bora, SMS-Agronomy, KVK, Tezpur, highlighted the FLDs, activities and services of KVK. He also interacted with the farmers and replied their queries. Dr. Hangamo Boro, Assistant Professor Botany, Rangapara Science College, spoke on native plants diversity, their uses, threats and need for cultivation and conservation.

Dr. Gitartha Kaushik, Assistant Professor, Zoology, Rangapara Science College has highlighted about the indigenous poultry breeds, importance of faunal diversity, there role in ecosystem, threats and need for their conservation. Col (Dr.) Ravindra Yadav (AHD) Director, NRAA, New Delhi highlighted the importance of native breeds of cow, goat, pig and other domestic animals, need for their conservation. Dr. S.P. Ahlawat (NBPGR) explained about the importance of in-situ conservation of wild relatives, on farm conservation of landraces, farmers varieties their role in human health and future breeding, improvement programme to combat diseases, pests and climate change. He also talked about community seed bank etc. Sh. Ajit Sharma, Member Secretary, Gram Panchayat, Borjuli, explained the activities and schemes being implemented in Gram Panchayat for the benefit of the farmers. Dr. Mezedve Islam, Scientific Officer, Assam State Biodiversity Board, Aranya Bhawan, Guwahati also spoke on importance of biodiversity heritage site and importance of rice, wild rice in food system. He also gave vote of thanks. The programme was covered by press and media. Farm inputs of daily farming use and citrus plants were distributed to the beneficiary farmers.

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