PRO No. 64/12
Public Relations Office
The Islamia University of Bahawalpur
National Conference on Saline Agriculture fighting against hunger and poverty in Southern Punjab concluded in Abbasia Campus. The Islamia University of Bahawalpur (IUB) organized this event in collaboration with Saline Soil Research Institute Rahim Yar Khan. The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Dr. Muhammad Mukhtar on this occasion exchanged views with Food and Agriculture Organization’s Country Representative, Dr. Kevin Gallagher and other delegates of the conference about the various development projects for the promotion of agriculture sector in Southern Punjab. The proposals for establishing a research center in Bahawalpur for the restoration of the glorious agrarian past of the area apart from reclamation of arid and saline soils were also discussed. All the delegates unanimously agreed that the agro-scientists and experts may endeavour to benefit University College of Agriculture & Environmental Sciences (UCA&ES) in particular and the region in general. The closing session was presided over by the Principal UCA&ES Dr. Moazzam Jamil while chief guest of the occasion was Former Chairman, Pakistan Agricultural Research Council, Dr. Iftikhar Ahmed.
The experts compiled the recommendations for the benefit of saline soil, which are as follows
- A central body may be constituted to initiate collaboration among different provincial and federal institutes working on salinity management.
- Reclamation of saline sodic/sodic soils with gypsum should be promoted through cost sharing of 50% each by Government and farming community respectively.
- The quality of gypsum should be ensured as 70% purity by legislation.
- First irrigation to wheat crop in saline sodic and under Rice-Wheat Cropping System should be delayed till 35-42 days of sowing.
- Rainwater harvesting technologies ranging from simple to scientific should be made obligatory through federal/provincial water sector and agriculture organizations across different ecological regions.
- Gypsum Export be strictly banned though legislation as it is a vital source of land reclamation.
- South Punjab Institute of Saline and Arid Agriculture, a center of excellence be established at IUB in collaboration with the Punjab Agriculture Research Board to develop, create and practice a new type of agriculture which has to be environmentally sustainable and adequate to soils of the region.
- State of the art technologies for Bahawalpur region should be provided inclusive of total package approach leading to enhanced productivity.