New Delhi, Nov 20: A new biotechnology centre has been set up in Kimin, a remote area of Arunachal Pradesh to help improve the socio-economic status of the tribal people in the State. It will aim at conservation and sustainable utilization of the local bio-resources using biotechnological tools. It will be supported by the Department of Biotechnology, Ministry of Science and Technology, Government of India.
Inaugurating the facility – Centre for Bio-resources and Sustainable Development, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) Science & Technology; Minister of State (Independent Charge) Earth Sciences; MoS PMO, Personnel, Public Grievances, Pensions, Atomic Energy and Space, Dr Jitendra Singh, noted that the Prime Minister, Mr. Narendra Modi has been providing special priority to the development of the North-Eastern region of the country and also to the upliftment of tribals.
In the last seven years, significant steps have been taken in areas like agriculture, hydel-power, infrastructure, information and communication technology, tourism as well as in creating new avenues of growth through the development of vertically integrated food processing chains, marketing, skill development and cross-border trade, he said.
The Minister underlined that the Department of Biotechnology has been playing a pivotal role to build capacity in the region for carrying out biotechnology research to address issues specific to the region and implement programmes for the benefit of the local communities.
The new Centre will have academic linkages with ICAR and CSIR Institutions for efficient implementation of these programmes and help create employment opportunities. The facilities for the implementation of these programmes will be established in four districts covering over 50 villages and benefit over 10,000 farmers in the next two years.
The Minister said the Centre will focus on three major programs: establishment of a state-of-the-art orchidarium at Kimin with satellite units in selected districts of Arunachal Pradesh for conservation and multiplication of priority orchid species, setting up of banana fibre extraction and processing units in selected districts of Arunachal Pradesh, and creation of an aroma unit for the promotion of cultivation of aromatic crops and entrepreneurship development.
The Centre has been set up by the State Council for Science and Technology, Department of Science & Technology, Government of Arunachal Pradesh. It was sanctioned on March 27, 2018, at a cost of Rs 54.23 Crores initially for a period of 3 years. The tenure of the project has now been extended till 26th September 2023.
Dr Jitendra Singh also dedicated a DBT funded skill vigyan programme in biotechnology to Arunachal Pradesh during the event. The programme is under the aegis of Skill India Mission. It aimed at facilitating the development of career paths for young graduates in life sciences/biotechnology by skilling them through hands-on practices. (India Science Wire)