“Need to frame scientific Grassland and Grass Bank Policy to increase milk production” “Centre keen to promote Pink Policy (mutton export) rather than White Revolution” – Narendra ModiChief Minister Shri Narendra Modi today asked the Centre to evolve a scientific Grassland and Grass Bank Policy to provide nutritious fodder to disease-free livestock with a view to increasing milk productivity and production. He was speaking as the chief guest at a function to launch Rs.2,242-crore National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) National Dairy Plan, called ‘Mission Milk’ at Anand in the presence of Union Agriculture Shri Sharad Pawar.
Shri Modi stated that whenever there is a drought in any part of the country, animals and milk production are among the first casualties. He expressed confidence that the Mission Milk will be of immense value to those working in this field.
Talking about Gujarat’s progress in the field, Shri Modi said that Gujarat had a vibrant dairy and cooperatives sector. He gave the example of the annual Pashu Arogya Melas. He said Gujarat holds between 3500 to 4000 Pashu Arogya Melas and special care is taken to ensure that animals don’t have to travel more than 3 km to receive treatment. He stated that the state has achieved 100 % vaccination that ensured that animals do not fall prey to viruses in the air or a change in weather.
The Chief Minister said that Gujarat holds as many as 27,000 cattle medical camps in the state every year, which has resulted in permanent eradication of 117 cattle diseases. He said that Gujarat has set up a Kamdhenu University to create awareness about enriched fodder in cattle rearing among cattle owners. He also added that Gujarat was perhaps the only state that was providing dental and cataract treatment for cattle. He said that Gujarat Government paid equal importance to agriculture, forestry and animal husbandry.
Shri Modi also warned about the phenomenon of the ‘Pink Revolution’, which was the Centre’s effort to provide subsidy to meat exports from India. He said that at a time when we are talking of a ‘White Revolution’, any talk of a ‘Pink Revolution’ is contradictory. “The subsidy given for mutton export is even bigger than Rs 2,242 crore - the financial outlay for National Dairy Plan. The official documents of Government of India suggest this. If this policy continues, no matter whatever efforts are made, cattle will be cut instead of being used for milk production. This is a big trouble,” said Shri Modi. He said that if such a policy continues, milk production would surely suffer. He also expressed concern about the smuggling of cows from India to Bangladesh.
The Chief Minister stated that the Prime Minister talks of the need to provide nutrition but asked if there was a problem of malnutrition among humans that what would be the condition among animal? Shri Modi shared his views on the need for animal nutrition and how a strong dairy network can truly complement this drive for nutrition among animals.
In his speech, Shri Modi also lauded the farmers of Anand and Kheda and said that had it not been for dairy production, he wonders what may have happened to farmers considering the threat of droughts that is constantly faced.
Speaking on the occasion, Union Agriculture Minister Shri Sharad Pawar said that India has emerged as the largest producer of milk due to the ‘White Revolution’ and we even saw the ‘Green Revolution’. He added that now the time has come to launch Phase-2 of these missions keeping in mind the needs of the country today and the growing population. He also said the nation can take a cue from women empowerment in Gujarat due to the dairy sector.
The Agriculture and Animal Husbandry Ministers of Karnataka, Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Madhya Pradesh and West Bengal, Chairmen of the State’s milk producing associations, office bearers of the organizations such as NDDB, IRMA and Gujarat State Milk Marketing Federation, Secretaries and senior officials, district collector Mrs. Avantika Singh, District police chief Rajendra Asari and District Development Officer K.K.Nirala was also present on the occasion.