Develop seeds, crop varieties tolerant to drought: Kakodkar

Bangalore: Weather would become more erratic in the coming years due to climate change and the country needed to come out with drought-tolerant seeds and crop varieties to promote food security and boost agricultural output, Chairman of Atomic Energy Commission Anil Kakodkar said on Sunday.

Given the country's economic growth, and population, which is not stable, it needed to produce more foodgrains in view of larger buying power and demand, he said at a national symposium on "The application of nuclear and space technologies for the benefit of farmers".

Noting that excess rainfall in some regions and drought conditions in some others in the country gave "shock" to food output, Kakodkar, also Secretary in the Department of Atomic Energy, said the country had to bring down vulnerability to this shock.

He stressed the role of science and space technologies to assist in the matters relating to seeds, crop varieties and agriculture patterns and related issues.

"...We need crop seeds and crop varieties which are drought-tolerant. So, we need to be able to prepare different crop varieties, different types of seeds which can produce plants which are tolerant to drought, tolerant to different kinds of diseases and adjust to variations of climate change".

Kakodkar also said the country should introduce technologies in different regions based on the kinds of soil that exists there. He added that salinity of water was going to increase in future.

Bureau Report