Chennai: Governor Banwarilal Purohit who presented the late Dr. Mohan Dharia Rashtranirman Puraskar award on agricultural scientist M.S. Swaminathan here on Saturday, appealed to the younger generation to take the lead in the field of agriculture.
"I appeal to the younger generation to take the lead in the field of agriculture. They should rise up to the occasion to bring about another green revolution in India," he said while paying rich tributes to Mr. Swaminathan. Speaking after conferring the late Dr. Mohan Dharia Rashtranirman Puraskar award on the eminent agricultural scientist, at a function held under the aegis of the Varanai Foundation here, he quoted Mahatma Gandhi and said, "the soul of India lives in its villages."
Though agriculture contributes only about 26 percent of the Gross domestic product it meets the food requirements of a population of 125 crores besides producing the raw materials for industrial growth. "Today Indian agriculture has reached a level where by the nation has emerged as the largest exporter of rice in the world. But 60 years before it was not so. The agricultural scenario was different. Farmers grew traditional long duration crops that gave moderate to poor yields. Therefore food production was low and highly inadequate to satisfy the Nation's food requirements," he said.
Foreign exchange resources were very low and the elders in the audience will recall that in 1966 the devaluation of the rupee, was undertaken so as to obtain a loan from the International Monetary Fund, the Governor added. Stating that the country owed a lot to Dr. M. S. Swaminathan, who played a key role in uplifting Indian agriculture to its present level of self sufficiency, Mr. Purohit said researchers and scientists should not only draw inspiration from great personalities like Dr. Swaminathan but should also seek his guidance and advice to attain excellence....