New Delhi: The Minister of Chemicals & Fertilizers, DV Sadananda Gowda, addressed the Valedictory Session of the Fertilizer Association of India (FAI) Annual Seminar on ‘New Approach to Fertilizer Sector’, in New Delhi yesterday. Ramesh Chand, Member, NITI Aayog; K.S. Raju, Chairman, FAI; Satish Chander, Director General, FA; and representatives of the industry were also present on the occasion.
Speaking about the need to have self-sufficiency in domestic production of fertilizers, Gowda said that India is a country of 1.3 billion people, which is set to rise to 1.5 billion by 2040, adding that to provide food security to such a population is the prime responsibility of the Government.
The Minister said fertilizers play an important role and act as an important input in agricultural production, so achieving self-sufficiency in domestic production is necessary, adding that Government’s relationship with the fertilizer industry is unique, as the support of the industry is required in enhancing food security.
Emphasizing the role of fertilizers in food security, Gowda said Prime Minister Narendra Modi has called for reduction in the use of chemical fertilizers by at least 10%, adding that excessive use of chemical fertilizers has started negatively impacting soil health.
Gowda said industry leaders should take a lead in organizing awareness campaigns among farmers to promote the balanced use of fertilizers, and shared that the Department, in joint collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture, will organize a ‘khad ka sahi upyog’ awareness campaign twice a year before the kharif and rabi seasons to sensitise farmers to use fertilizers as per the recommendations of soil health cards.
Gowda stressed on the need for newer forms of fertilizers to be developed and introduced, which could be more effective than conventional fertilizers, and yet friendlier to ecosystem, and mentioned the efforts of IFFCO in developing a newer form of fertilizers, called ‘nano fertilizers’.
The Minister expressed happiness that these fertilizers will not only be more effective and environmentally friendlier, but will also help in reducing the subsidy burden on Government. He said that Modi has also stressed on the need for innovation & technology to accelerate progress.
Gowda said it is the Government’s effort that there is an adequate provision for fertilizer subsidy and that payments to the industry are made promptly, adding that fiscal limitations of the Government are to be considered.
Speaking on the occasion, Prof. Ramesh Chand stressed on the optimum use of fertilizers and said fertilizer use should be accompanied with specified use of organic manure to replenish the organic matter of soil.
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