Gangtok, 04 Sep (IPR) : Minister for Tourism, Irrigation, India-Nepal River Development Project Government of Uttrakhand, Shri. Satpalji Maharaj along with nine other officials from the Government of Uttarakhand visited the National Research Centre for Orchids, Pakyong today. Shri. Satpalji Maharaj and other officials were welcomed by Principal Scientist of NRC, Pakyong, Dr. L.C. De, SDM Pakyong Shri Tenzing Denzongpa and other officials of the Centre.
During the visit, Minister and his team examined the different process of Orchid farming, species house, orchid herbarium and experimental farming of orchid in NRC premises. Later a power point presentation was shown where facts, figures and other aspects of orchid cultivation was discussed in detail. He also discussed issues related to techniques of orchid farming and how to help farmers to take the commercial orchid growing skills and implement it.
Shri. Satpalji Maharaj stated that the climatic conditions, topography of both Sikkim and Uttrakhand are quite similar and Sikkim is emerging as one of the most advanced orchid growing state in the country. More and more people are getting attracted to this cash crop and thus this culture of orchid farming needed to be implemented in Uttarakhand as well. The income of farmers will also go up by producing orchids along with other kind of mixed farming and value addition in orchid farming was one boon which increases the prospect of stand of living, he stated.
He applauded the organic movement initiated by the Chief Minister, Shri Pawan Chamling in making Sikkim as the first organic state in the country. He further added that being a small Himalayan state, Sikkim has set examples in various fields and the policies implemented towards environmental protection needed to be emulated by the rest of the states as well.
Shri. Satpalji strongly advocated “Green Bonus” for Sikkim and other hill states of India. He said that Sikkim had been in the forefront in conserving environment and in lieu of the environmental policies, Green Bonus would serve as an additional drive.
Talking about the mode of connectivity in hilly terrain regions, Shri Maharaj pitched for a network of ropeways across the state and said that this would benefit mode of communication and boost tourism as well. He said that Sikkim is one of the most cleanest states and other state’s of the country have a lot to learn from it.
Earlier, Principal Scientist, Dr. L.C. De briefed about the various tools and techniques adopted by NRC laboratory in producing orchid seed and tissue culture for the purpose of orchid growing.
After Pakyong, Shri Maharaj reached Martam and inaugurated Lingtam as the cleanest village in order to promote rural tourism. MLA Martam, Shri Mechung Bhutia showed Organic fields and explained the process of organic farming and how the state has banned the use of harmful chemicals in the day to day consumption. He also inspected the Gram Bikes Kendra at Martam and met with his throng of devotees.
The team will be making a series of field visits in South and West districts of Sikkim like, DharaVikas and Watershed Work at Damthang, Organic field visits, Homestay visits, tourist attraction places etc during their stay in Sikkim over the next few days. Satpalji Maharaj and his team are on a study tour to Sikkim to learn about the implementation of organic agriculture and village tourism.