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The Communication Centre, PAU, under the Directorate of Extension Education, hosted a special session today for farmers on the Grassroots Innovators of Punjab (GRIP) programme initiated by the Punjab State Council for Science and Technology. The session, held at the Dr Khem Singh Gill Farmers Service Centre, saw participation from state farmers, scientists from PAU, and its KVKs across the state.

The guest speaker, Dr Alkesh Kandoria, Principal Scientific Officer at the Punjab State Council for Science and Technology, highlighted the transformative role of grassroots innovators in Punjab and emphasized their potential to drive agricultural development in the country. He described the council’s role in facilitating innovative technological ideas, popularizing scientific temperament among youth, and familiarizing startups with the latest research. Dr Kandoria also shared that India’s global innovation index ranking improved from 60th to 40th in 2023, and Punjab ranks sixth in the state innovation index, despite its immense human resource and technological leadership. He encouraged the farmers to aspire for the top position, citing the entrepreneurial spirit of Punjabis. Dr Kandoria shared examples of farmers whose innovative solutions have won accolades at state and national levels and announced the deadline for applying for innovations related to novel products and processes to be February 25, 2024.

The Chief Guest, Dr MS Bhullar, PAU Director of Extension Education, urged farmers to participate in the GRIP program, calling them “on-the-field scientists” with groundbreaking solutions to on-farm problems. He emphasized the importance of farmers’ feedback in guiding the university’s research.

Engineer Raja Ramana Singh explained the steps to participate in the program and shared details about national innovators’ prize-winning ideas.

Dr Anil Sharma, Deputy Director TV and Radio, highlighted PAU’s extensive outreach through social media and urged the audience to remain connected with the latest agricultural technological developments. The session concluded with a round of Q&A and a vote of thanks.

Dr Inderpreet Kaur Boparai, Entomologist & Dr Ritu Raj, Assistant Professor (Plant Pathology) conducted the event.

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