Tezpur University (TU) on Monday has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Lucknow-based CSIR-Central Institute of Medicinal and Aromatics Plants (CIMAP) to implement CSIR-Aroma Mission and rural technologies in the north-eastern region.
The MoU was signed during a one-day seminar at Tezpur University on ‘CSIR-Aroma Mission: Aroma Crops for Boosting Rural Economy of Northeast India’.
The aim of the one-day seminar was to initiate a brainstorming exercise for devising strategies to promote cultivation, processing and marketing of high value aromatic and medicinal plants that could empower local farmers/ entrepreneurs of Northeast India.
The programme has witnessed around 103 participants represented by the farmers of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, scholars, scientists, entrepreneurs and industrialists of the region.
The north-eastern region of India is a treasure house of biodiversity due to its picturesque landscape and agro-climatic conditions suitable for promotion, cultivation and processing of aromatic and medicinal plants.
During the keynote address, Prof A K Tripathi, Director, CSIR-CIMAP has emphasized on aromatic and medicinal plants suitable for the region that can contribute to high income and employment generation.
Prof A K Tripathi has suggested for the formation of farmers advisory centre (nodal centre) at Tezpur University to facilitate in addressing problems faced by the farmers of north-eastern region in promoting medicinal and aromatic cultivation under CSIR-Aroma Mission.
The unemployed youth can go for value-addition of essential oils produced by the farmers of Northeast India with the technical know-how support from CSIR-laboratories and Tezpur University, Chief Scientist and Principal Investigator Dr Alok Kalra, said.
The experts from industry have suggested the farmers to choose aromatic crop varieties developed by the CSIR-laboratories due its established acceptability in the existing market.
The scientists from CSIR-IHBT, Palampur and CSIR-IIIM Jammu have deliberated on the cultivation practices and economy of high altitude aromatic crops such as rose, rosemary, scented geranium and lavender that can be replicated in the farmers’ fields of north-eastern region that can contribute to doubling farmers’ income with small land holdings.
The experts from CSIR-NEIST Jorhat have deliberated on various activities undertaken by the NEIST under CSIR-Aroma Mission and the superior varieties of lemongrass (L8), citronella (C-5) and patchouli (P1) and its yield and oil content in the farmer’s field of Northeast India.