To create awareness amongst Farmers, Researchers and Students, Amity Institute of Microbial Science organized one day Training Workshop on ‘Provision of Protection of Plant Varieties in India’ at Amity Campus, Sector 125 Noida.
The event was inaugurated by Chief Guest Dr. Ravi Prakash, Registrar, Protection of Plant varieties and Farmers Rights Authority, Ministry of Agriculture; Dr. Sunil Saran, Senior Vice Chairman, Amity Science Technology and Innovation Foundation and Dr. Ajit Varma, Advisor, Amity Institute of Microbial Sciences.
Sharing his thoughts on biodiversity of India, Dr. Ravi Prakash said that India is one of the 17 countries blessed with rich bio-diversity and has over 49,000 species of plants & fungi which represents 11% of world’s flora. He further added that there are thousands of varieties, cultivars, landraces and ecotypes evolved in India’s biodiversity. Dr. Prakash appreciated the role of farmers in conservation, improving and developing plant varieties. He mentioned farmers have come across various innovations in informal seed systems, storage and control of pests that have benefitted the agricultural activities immensely. He apprised that due to various innovations in the field of agriculture, there has been 27 times increase in production of various commodities. Enlightening the participants about Seed Industry, Dr. Prakash said that global seed market is estimated to be of 45 billion USD and India stands at 5th position in the market. He emphasized on the challenges faced by Seed Industry after the intervention of WTO, which include restrictions on free exchange of plant genetic resources which is affecting the local farmers and industry.
During the session, Dr. Prakash briefed the farmers about enactment of the law of Protection of Plant Varieties of Farmer’s Right (PPVFR) and explained them how Farmers Rights Authority benefit sharing, aids rewards and registerations of farmers. He also mentioned that the Authority is planning to organize similar programmes nationwide for the farming community.
Addressing the gathering, Dr. Sunil Saran said that the farmers are not well aware about their rights and latest agricultural techniques; hence, Amity University conducts such workshops to create awareness amongst the farmers. He called upon agriculture scientists, researchers and farmers to give attention to quality aspect as well to develop new crop varieties. He emphasized that the participants should make the best use of the provision of PPVFR Act and should also enlighten other farmers about it.
During the workshop, various topics were discussed including ‘Newer Approaches to increase crop yields’, ‘IP issues in Biotechnology – Crop Sustainability’ and ‘IP protection system in India’.
More than 100 farmers, researchers and students participated in the workshop.