Chief Minister, Dr Pramod Sawant inaugurated the Goa College of Agriculture under the aegis of State Agricultural Management and Extension Training Institute, Goa (SAMETI-Goa) and Directorate of Agriculture, at Old Goa, today in the presence of Minister for Agriculture, Shri Ravi Naik, Cumbarjua MLA, Shri Rajesh Faldessai, Secretary, Agriculture, Shri Arun Kumar Mishra, IAS, Vice-Chancellor, Goa University, Prof Harilal Menon, Director, Higher Education, Shri Prasad Lolayekar, IAS, Director of Directorate of Agriculture, Shri Nevil Alphonso, Principal of the college of Agriculture, Dr Pravin Bhende, Chairperson of North Goa Zilla Panchayat, Shri Siddhesh Naik, Sarpanch of Village Panchayat of Se Old Goa, Ms Sandra Gonsalves, among others.
While speaking on the occasion attended by newly admitted students and their parents, Dr Sawant assured them that the college will run smoothly, will have all the necessary accreditations to enable the future graduates a bright future. Dr Sawant said that the Government will not fall short in helping the college run well. He told the students to aim at becoming agriculturists and informed that they would start a Masters in Agriculture in the college.
Dr Sawant added that apart from the existing building from where classes would be held, they have identified land for a new college building in the vicinity which would be built soon. He further said that the college would start a research institute for agricultural studies in the college in coordination with Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), which is located nearby.
The Chief Minister suggested encouraging practice of inter-cropping, growing more cashews plantations. He said that the Government is going beyond giving subsidies and that was buying produce from the locals. We all have to work together for a Swayampurna Goem, he said.
Dr Sawant further informed of the Government’s plans to start a veterinary college and a degree in pisciculture.
The Chief Minister spoke of several initiatives of the Government to encourage agriculture like the Kisan Credit card facility, starting of training centers in both districts, which teaches how to make fruitful use of agricultural waste products etc
Minister for Agriculture, Shri Ravi Naik, expressed happiness that Goa has got a college for agriculture and stated that it is centrally located which would make it convenient for those interested in pursuing studies in this field. Shri Naik hoped that no more fields and agricultural land in Goa would be converted for non-agricultural use and said that we have to protect what our ancestors have given us.
Cumbarjua MLA, Shri Rajesh Faldessai said that the establishment of the college for agriculture in Goa would help Goans who otherwise would have to travel out of state to study agriculture