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ICAR- Indian Institute of Soil and Water Conservation (ICAR-IISWC), Dehradun has organized a Field Day-cum Demonstration of Soil and Water Conservation Measures at Khatar, Kalsi Block, Dehradun on 29/08/2023. Recognizing that importance of soil and water conservation measures for conserving natural resources and enhancing agricultural production at farmers’ fields, a programme on Demonstration of Soil and Water Conservation Measures at farmers’ fields under Scheduled Castes Sub-Plan (SCSP) was organized.

The message of Dr. M. Madhu, Director, IISWC, Dehradun on resource conservation and sustainability was conveyed to the participants, during the program. Crop and soil healthcare inputs including spraying machine, and soil fertilizers besides clumps of Napier grass and sweet potato for improved fodder availability and crop production were distributed to about 70 beneficiary farmers of the 4 hamlets in Kalsi Block.

Dr. M. Muruganandam, Principal Scientist and Overall Coordinator of the SCSP and TSP programme at Dehradun shared the specific features of resources conservation by providing enabling environment for the weaker sections of the farming communities. He has the role of soil and water conservation measures in sustaining natural resources and promoting livelihoods. Also, a discussion on the creation of custom hiring center with necessary tools and implements at the village to ease out the difficulties of farming and create climate-smart farming.

The program begun with Dr. Devideen Yadav, Scientist (Agronomy) and member of the SCSP team, emphasizing the use and application of sprayers, planting techniques, and the importance of sweet potato and hybrid Napier grass.
Dr. Trisha Roy, Scientist (Soils) and member of the SCSP team described the use, application, and benefits of applying boron fertilizers in various crops to promote balanced fertilization and enhance soil quality.

Dr. Indu Rawat, Senior Scientist (Home Science) and team Leader of SCSP interacted with farmers to highlight the importance of the SCSP program and formed four Users Groups to carry out future activities for targeted development.

Dr. Deepak Singh, Scientist (SWC Engineering) and member SCSP team has been speaking on providing irrigation access for farmers and creating soil and water conservation structures in the coming days.

The programme continued by a discussion about mushroom farming by Dr. Anupam Barh, Scientist (Plant Breeding) and member SCSP team to promote mushroom entrepreneurs in the village.

Dr. Sadikul Islam, Scientist (Agri. Statistics) and member SCSP team discussed promotion of poultry farming among villagers and training on poultry farming.

The programme featured the demonstration of the spray of pesticide and distribution of 30 Knapsack sprayers to promote efficient integrated weed management, the distribution and demonstration of 50 packets (1 kg each) of boron fertilizer, and the establishment of 300 slips of hybrid Napier grass (variety- IGFRI 7). About 5 kg sweet potato cuttings of Kishan variety were also planted at farmers’ fields to promote maize + sweet potato technology of IISWC.

At the end, soil and water conservation measures, spraying technique of herbicides, application of boron fertilizers, planting of hybrid Napier grass, and sweet potato cuttings were demonstrated at the farmers’ field. A total of about 125 farmers and their families took part and have benefited from the promotion-oriented awareness program. The participant farmers actively engaged in the program and at the end thanked the organizers and the Institute.

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