A special meeting of the board of governors at the Pakistan Agriculture Research Centre (PARC) headquarters has suggested the board head to approach the prime minister to oppose the CDA’s plan to turn National Agriculture Research Centre (NARC) into a housing society, said a press release issued on Wednesday.
The board in a unanimous resolution on Wednesday urged the president of the BoG to approach the prime minister and inform him about the contribution of the NARC for agriculture development and the consequences of closing or shifting the centre from its existing location.
The resolution urged the BoG president to suggest to the prime minister to reject the CDA’s summary and transfer the land in the name of the NARC.
The BoG meeting was presided over by the Federal Minister for National Food Security and Research Sikandar Hayat Khan. The meeting was attended by Ministry of National Food Security and Research Additional Secretary Dr Muhammad Hashim Populzai, PARC Chairperson Dr Iftikhar Ahmad, former PARC chairman Amir Muhammad, board members, Abdul Majeed Nizamani and Planning Commission on Agriculture Member Dr Mubarak were present in the meeting. Ministry of National Food Security and Research Secretary Seerat Asghar also joined the meeting through telephone.
The federal minister said that the development of rust-resistant wheat varieties had generated a benefit of around Rs2,000 billion since 1989, while the centre contributed Rs273.54 billion towards controlling, managing and eradicating various animal diseases.
Similarly, the National Reference Lab of poultry disease has already saved Rs90 billion to poultry industry since 2004 and helped make Pakistan a bird-flue free country.
The minister said that Rs45 billion had been saved by controlling Rinder Pest disease of cows and buffaloes, while by managing and controlling the foot-and-mouth disease and PPR disease Rs.138 billion have been saved so far.
He said that the development and commercialisation of the farm machines alone have contributed more than Rs230 billion since 1985, while with the introduction of European bees along with improved technology, the NARC revolutionised honey production resulting in economic benefit of Rs50 billion besides making Pakistan a honey-exporting country.
The minister also mentioned the gene-bank facility, and preservation of insect and plant specimen for reference, which he said was a national asset.
Published in The Express Tribune, July 2nd, 2015.
Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive.
For more information, please see our Comments FAQ