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ICAR-Central Institute of Freshwater Aquaculture Bhubaneswar organized a one day Farmer-Scientist Interface program on Freshwater Aquaculture at Balandapada village, Phiringia block today. The program aimed to enhance the skills of men and women SC fish farmers in the adopted villages of Kandhamal district under DST project. Around 170 beneficiaries mostly women SHGs have attended the program. During the event, Sri. Prafulla Kanhar, DFO Kandhamal, emphasized the importance of aquaculture and utilization of the latest technology from ICAR-CIFA for maximizing productivity in ponds. He also provided information about different schemes and subsidies available to farmers and fishermen to enhance fish production and productivity as well as to avail the scholarship scheme available to the children of fishers and fishermen community.

He encouraged farmers to adopt new technologies and register on the Go-sugam portal of the Odisha government for easy access to various schemes through the online portal.

Dr. S.N. Sethi; Principal Scientist, ICAR-CIFA, discussed about various fish species and freshwater aquaculture technologies. He emphasized the importance of organic fish farming, maintaining clean ponds, and preserving the environment. He also gave information on several organic manures that can be used in ponds for improved growth, such as cow dung, mustard oil cake, groundnut oil cake, etc. He urged the women beneficiaries in particular to take up carp seed rearing in order to obtain high-quality fish seeds for their own ponds and to sell in far-off marketplaces for the greatest possible profit. Additionally, he advised them to test pond water and soil and apply the latest feed technology for proper nutrition of the fish. Mr. Nirakar Nayak, Sarpanch of Balandapada village, discussed the on-going developmental work related to fish farming in the village and shared future plans and demands. He assured to the beneficiaries to maintain contact with the DFO of the district to discuss and use latest tech available for fishery enterprise. He also discussed about the facilities available in Mo Pokhari Yojana and to make proper use of that for the construction and maintenance of ponds. Dr. G.S. Saha; Principal Scientist, ICAR-CIFA, stressed upon the idea of integrated fish farming by linking fish in a tank to money in a bank. He advised farmers to use this strategy and said farm women may practice fish farming in their spare time.

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