FROM OUR STAFF CORRESPONDENT
SHILLONG, Dec 23: The Union Ministry of Agriculture has agreed ‘in principle’ to set up an cooperative centre of excellence in Meghalaya with specific objective to upgrade the skills of the handiwork/activities of the members of the co-operative societies in the field of handloom handicrafts, allied agricultural activities and marketing aspects.
This assurance was given by the Union Minister of Agriculture during a meeting held with the Meghalaya minister of co-operatives HDR Lyngdoh last week in New Delhi. Following up the earlier meeting that Lyngdoh held with the Union Minister of State of Agriculture, sometimes in November this year, the upcoming centre of excellence will cater to the needs and requirements at the grassroots level and not relevant with the any type of academic institute in the field of co-operation and allied subjects. Lyngdoh told The Sentinel that the Union Minister said, “It is done and the state proposal will be approved,” even as he added that the state government will start focusing on the necessary formalities right from land acquisition to other aspects that will cater to the upcoming centre.
Citing the 1466 registered co-operative societies in the state and the sizable co-operative societies in the Northeastern region, the Minister in charge of co-operation felt, “Having a proper hands in imparting training and tackling the problems of marketing and capital availability through technological interventions will go a long way in reviving the cooperative sector especially when the younger generations considers it as an outdated model.” According to Lyngdoh, the proposed centre will be different from the institute of co-operative magement, Guwahati and the Rajiv Gandhi University of Cooperative magement in Sivasagar.