Future belongs to digital education: ICAR DDG
by RAJ KUMAR
Ranchi: Dr RC Agrawal, Deputy Director General (agricultural education) of ICAR has urged the scientists, students and administrators to equip themselves for digital education and information because future belongs to this mode of education and instructions.
Addressing the 41st foundation day function of Birsa Agricultural University (BAU) on Saturday, he said the challenges of covid-19 have provided opportunities also. ICAR has earmarked Rs 400 crore budget this year for promoting digital education which is comparatively fast.
Dr Agrawal said that foundation day of any institution is not only an occasion to boast of past achievements but also to prepare fullproof strategy for future challenges and achieving roadmap ahead. This is also an occasion to learn from past mistakes and shortcomings. He said during past it took nearly 20 years to double farmers income but this time we have to achieve the task of doubling farmers income within 5 years. All stakeholders like planners, scientists, students and farmers have to gird up their loins to achieve this task. Increasing cropping intensity and crop diversification should be the focus areas for this purpose.Dr Agrawal stressed that all agricultural universities should increase their revenue from internal resources so that some of their needs and liabilities could be met out of that fund. At present, the average of internal receipts of farm varsities is Rs 6 crore while highest contribution under this head by a single university is Rs 125 crore. Being public institutions, the agricultural universities can’t substantially increase fee of students but efforts should be expedited to increase receipts from land, buildings, crop production, infrastructure facilities, trainings, consultancy services etc. BAU Vice Chancellor Dr Onkar Nath Singh said that 18 students cracked JRF and SRF examinations while 10 students got admission in leading technical and management institutes of the country and abroad. Altogether 542 students where admitted in different regular UG, Master’s in PhD programmes. He asked the teachers associated with the faculty level guidance and placement cells to strengthen their liaison with public and private sector for regular lucrative placement of students. Release proposals of 9 improved varieties of different crops have been sent to the state government and once it is released its large scale seed production would be started, the VC added.*Best Scientist Award*Dr Sohan Ram, University Professor-cum-Chief Scientist, department of genetics and plant breeding was honoured with Best Scientist Award for the year 2020-21 for his exemplary contribution in varietal development and germplasm maintenance of linseed crop, enhancing the prestige of the university. With his continued efforts, about 300 germplasms of linseed are being maintained by the University. Variety developed by him has been released by Central Varietal Release Committee of Government of India also.*Other awards*UG toppers Ayush Lal Das, Ranchi Agriculture College, Nikita Singh, Ranchi Veterinary College and Anshu Kumari, Forestry College were honoured for their outstanding academic performance. The students felicitated for selection in prestigious institutions and examinations include RAC graduates Arpita Choudhari (IIM Rohtak), Sakshi Suman (XLRI Jamshedpur), Jagriti Kumari (IRMA, Anand), Rahul Prasad and Joshi Xalxo (NIAM, Jaipur), RVC graduates Dr Nikita Singh (Royal Veterinary College, London University), Dr Asim Kumar (JPSC), Dr Anna Kumari (BPSC) and Dairy Technology College graduate Aditya Jha (IIM Rohtak and XLRI Jamshedpur).*Essay competition*In the essay competition organised on the topic work ethics and value system for teachers-scientists, Dr Rebeka Sinha, Ranchi Veterinary College, Rema Das, RNT Agriculture College, Deoghar and Rahul Kumar, Agriculture College, Garhwa bagged first, second and third prize respectively. In the essay competition for non teaching staff, Alok Kumar Jha stood first and Shiv Shankar Jha second. Topic for them was ‘Motivation and job performance’.*National Service Scheme*Those who emerged first in different events at university level are Kumari (slogan on COVID awareness), Shweta Bharti (short video film on COVID awareness), Winkle (slogan on road safety) and Cathy Tanya Toppo (poster on road safety).Over 100 other staff and students were also awarded as best workers and for their performance in college-level essay, slogan writing, poster making and short video film making competitions.At the outset Dr MS Yadav, Dean, Faculty of Agriculture welcome the guests and participants. Dr BK Jha proposed a vote of thanks. Shashi Singh anchored the event while Dr Rakesh Kumar, Dr Neeraj Kumar and Dr Binay Kumar announced the names of prize winners under different categories.About 250 persons attended the online event. Some senior officers of the university had gathered offline too in the RAC Auditorium, following the Covid guidelines.