ITANAGAR: Arunachal Pradesh Chief Minister Pema Khandu has stressed the need to expedite projects connected with the Palm Oil sector across the State. He emphasised during a detailed discussion on the subject with Agriculture department officials including the Secretary of the Department. This Central government scheme has been launched in the State under the 'National Food Security Mission'. In fact, he called for successful implementation of all the Centrally sponsored schemes (CSS) across the State.
The Department officials informed the Chief Minister that the State government had signed MoUs (Memorandums of Understanding) with three companies – Siva Sai, 3F and Ruchi Soya — for setting up oil-extraction factories and to also buy back oil palm fruits from farmers under the scheme.
However, while several farmers will be harvesting palm fruits for the first time this year, the three companies are yet to establish the assured infrastructure. The Chief Minister took serious note of it; and directed the State Agriculture and Horticulture Secretary to urgently take up the matter with the company authorities and the Deputy Commissioners concerned. He said that as the oil palm grown in the State is of top quality, the scheme should be prioritized.
Arunachal Pradesh commenced its palm plantation and palm oil programme in 2014; and the growth of this sector in recent years has been rapid.
A pioneer in palm oil cultivation in the country, Arunachal Pradesh has already covered over 5,000 acres for this sector in the Lower Debang Valley district. Plans are in the pipeline to set up a state-of-the-art processing facility with a captive power plant.
India is pushing for palm cultivation in the northeastern states of Assam, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh to increase production of palm oil.
DEVELOPMENT OF FISHERIES: Chief Minister Khandu also emphasized on the successful and prompt implementation of the recently launched 'Prime Minister's Matsya Sampada Yojana' (PMMSY) under which the Centre along with the State will bear 60 per cent of the total cost for establishment of a fishery and 40 per cent will be the beneficiary's investment.
He added that this is a very important scheme and people will jump to take it. He negated the Department's concern about people getting reluctant to invest 40% saying 60% funding by the government is a huge relief for any enthusiastic farmer. "Only genuine farmers will come forward to avail of the scheme. As they will be also investing in the project, they will take great care of it," he pointed out.
Among others, the Monday meeting here was also attended by Agriculture, Horticulture, Fishery and Dairy Development Minister Tage Taki.