Bamboo cultivation popularised in a big way in India's northeast
Jorhat, May 3 (ANI): The Indian Government is encouraging bamboo cultivation in a big way in the country's northeast region with the aim of improving the lives of local communities.
Several steps have been taken to enhance bamboo conservation and productivity in the region.
The Rain Forest Research Institute (RFRI), Jorhat, recently organised a conference to discuss ways to promote the commercial cultivation of bamboo and its management, its use as an inter-crop and the propagation of bamboo in the region.
The Rain Forest Research Institute, Jorhat, and Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education (ICFRE), Dehradun, had jointly organised the conference.
During the conference, strategies on how to develop the northeast as a center of excellence for bamboo was discussed.
"The establishment of bamboo composite center with the collaboration of one of the institute, which is located in Bangalore and here, will be demonstrating all technological aspects which are related to utilisation of bamboo. So that the local entrepreneurs and farmers of this region could be exposed to various uses of bamboo and how they could earn some money out of this bamboo enterprises," said Jagdish Kishwan, Director General of the Indian Council of Forestry Research and Education in Dehradun.
"As a programme, our bamboo station village program, what we do that the R and D what we do here should be placed before the local people and they also understand about the bamboo propagation and application. So definitely it is going to be the exercise where the local community are involved and they are made known to the research we are doing here and how best that can help in getting additional income for them especially in bamboo and cane," said N.K. Vasu, Director, Rain Forest research Institute in Jorhat.
Bamboo is one of the world's most useful renewable natural resources and over 3,000 versatile uses are associated with the social, economic and cultural fabric of the north-eastern States.
Bamboo and its products can be a major potential export commodity in the northeast.
The Central Government is running a National Bamboo Mission to address issues relating to the development of bamboo and to encourage bamboo cultivation.
Farmers find bamboo cultivation quite useful.
"I took up bamboo plantation because it's very easy, profitable and is not a time consuming job. Bamboo is used for different purposes in our region, in construction, fencing, house, manure, handicrafts etc. These days the demand of raw bamboo in the market is very high. I own 3/4 bighas of bamboo. Whenever financial need arises, I sell bamboo. I earn Rs.2-3 thousand every month. I support my family with this, " said Jitul Gogoi, a bamboo farmer in Assam.
In northeast, bamboo is traditionally used as construction material, household articles, in handicrafts and papermaking, agriculture, fisheries, transportation and village industry.
India is home to almost 45 per cent of the world's bamboo forest and two-third of the growing stock of bamboo in the country is available in the northeast.
136 species of bamboo are found across India, of which 89 species in north-east region only.
Bamboo cultivation and its proper utilisation are widely anticipated to benefit the local entrepreneurs and bamboo cultivators. By Vaschipem Kamodang (ANI)
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