The XXIX Annual Research Council Meeting for large cardamom for 2020-21 of Indian Cardamom Research Institute, Regional Research Station, Spices Board, Tadong, Gangtok was held in Conference Hall of Indian Council of Agricultural Research, North East Hill Region, Regional Centre Gangtok on 17thNovember, 2020-21. The meeting was attended by Heads and Scientists representing various national research institutes, officials from State and Central Govt. Departments and other stake holders of large cardamom industry.
The inaugural function was graced by the distinguished dignitaries namely Dr. S. Anbalagan (IFS), Chief Executive Officer, Sikkim Organic Farming Development Agency, Govt. of Sikkim, Dr. B C Basistha, Director Department of Science and Technology, Govt. of Sikkim, Dr. R Laha, Joint Director, ICAR, NEH RC Gangtok, Dr. Rajiv Gogoi, Scientist E & Head, Botanical Survey of India, Shri Tilak Gajmer, Director Agriculture, Govt. of Sikkim, Dr. R. Joshi, Head in charge, GBPHIE, Sikkim, Shri Sonam Rinchen Bhutia, Director Agriculture, MOVCD. Govt of Sikkim, Joint Director Shri Rabin Gurung , Horticulture Department Govt of Sikkim, Many Scientist of ICAR and Regional Ayurveda Research Institute, Tadong and Dr. A.B. Remashree, Director (R & D), ICRI, Spices Board, Myladumpara, Kerala.
The programme started at 10:30 am with the welcome address by Dr. D. Ajay, Scientist- C & In Charge, Regional Research Station of Indian Cardamom Research Institute, Spices Board, Gangtok.
Dr. A.B. Remashree, Director (R&D), ICRI, Spices Board, Myladumpara, Kerala gave a brief introduction of achievement in research and development activities of large cardamom for the Sikkim Region carried by Spices Board as a whole and also different initiatives on research in forthcoming days and emphasize of cooperation among the scientific organization in large cardamom research in a holistic manner. She also appreciated state Govt. support for spices development in the states as well as cooperation for carry out the research & developmental activities by Spices Board and expecting similar support to Spices Board in future also which will help the Board to do in the best manner for the benefit of large cardamom farmers in the region. She also thanked the Govt. of Sikkim for providing land for the construction of Spice Complex at Pakyong. It was also mentioned that the Spice Complex will include processing facility for Spices and also house all the offices of Spices Board related to Marketing, Development and Research activities. The preliminary works are in progress and the entire work will be completed within 36 months.
The chief guest of this function was Dr. S. Anbalagan (IFS), CEO, SOFDA Govt. of Sikkim, and he stated that large cardamom is the main cash crop of Sikkim. He appreciated the activities of Spices Board research and developmental activities and asked for cooperation in promoting the organic spices export from the states. He stressed on transfer of research findings to farming community and also urged the farmers to adopt the scientific approach to increase their productivity and income. He appreciated Spices Board coordination and cooperation with various departments and relentlessly working for the livelihood improvement of farmers of Sikkim.
Dr. R. Laha, Joint Director ICAR NEH RC- Gangtok in his brief speech appreciated and informed that the research work carried out by ICRI, RRS Tadong definitely help to boost up of large cardamom sector. He also mentioned that during COVID 19 the work carried out by Spices Board for farmers is really praiseworthy. He also emphasized on collaborative work with ICRI on various research aspect on large cardamom. He appreciated the initiation in releasing the pamphlet by ICRI on blight disease management and mentioned that it will really be helpful for the farming community.
Dr. B C Basistha, Director, DST Govt. of Sikkim in his speech mentioned large cardamom is the cash crop and livelihood of Sikkim farming community and stated that had to do lots in the field also mentioned that DST had carried out work on isolation of Chirkey RNA, production of virus free large cardamom through tissue culture. He also emphasized that collaborative approach will definitely help not only the scientific community but as a whole the farming community which in turn boost up large cardamom sector as a whole. So, he is very much hopeful to collaborate with Indian Cardamom Research Institute. He also mentioned the electric drier
Dr. Rajiv Gogoi, Scientist E & Head, Botanical Survey of India SHRC- Gangtok, informed the unprecedented Covid -19 pandemic situation made us to learn many things but its teach us a good lesson to the mankind. He mentioned how unemployment increase due to Covid situation and youth must now adopt the modern approach but not leave our tradition as India is an agrian economy. In Covid situation resurgence of Spices export is tremendous and western people started adding spices in their food items. As all the dignitaries stressed on the collaborative work, he mentioned that Botanical Survey of India can very well associated in exploration of unexplored traditional spices and herbs having potentialities. He also handed over two books recently released by Botanical survey India.
In the inaugural session Annual Research report for the year 2020-21 released along with release of Pamphlet on “Blight Disease Management practice” and distributed among the august gathering. In the programme itself ICRI, RRS Tadong distributed eight electric drier with SCSP fund under All India Co-ordinated Research Project on Spices implement by the institute with aid from ICAR- IISR, Kozhikode.
Inaugural session comes to an end by vote of Thanks from Dr. T. N. Deka, Scientist- C, ICRI, RRS, Spices Board Tadong.
Inaugural session was followed by technical session which includes the presentation of progress reports of 2020-21 and open house discussion. The work presented by the scientist was critically evaluated by the Chairman of sessions and scientific fraternity present in the technical sessions and forwarded their suggestions. After a thorough discussion and suggestions for each session, decisions were taken for the forthcoming experiments for year 2021-22. At the end of the technical sessions rapporteurs of respective sessions presented the decision taken and comments of chairman of each session.
Technical session as well as the program concluded by 5:30 pm with of vote of thanks from Dr. D. Ajay, Scientist-C & In-charge, ICRI, RRS, Tadong.