19 September 2014: His Excellency Lyonpo Yeshi Dorji accompanied by senior officials from Ministry of Agriculture and Forests visited Eusakha, Susuna, Naja geog of Paro and Eusu, Bji and Tshelungkha under Haa Dzongkhag. During his visit, he met with local leaders and hundreds of people residing in the various surrounding villages and discussed their difficulties, shared their hopes and dreams.
Drinking/Irrigation water and wild life conflict were the only two foremost moan in the entire visit to rural places; in which Hon’ble Lyonpo responded in saying that ministry will very soon be sending a team for physical verification to resolve the irrigation case and another alternative he advised was on rain water harvesting. With the vision of His Majesty the Fourth Druk Gyelpo’s Gross National Happiness (GNH) and to achieve food self sufficiency, Lyonpo added that 70% of the population depends on agriculture farming and to achieve 11 Plan Target to achieve country’s food self sufficiency, It is now time that people should venture into commercial farming to make light of the rupee crunch. Speaking to the farmers, Lyonpo shared that one possible way to improve the current economic situation is by increasing the production of food and agricultural products which means lesser import. Much has been achieved but needs more improvement in the agriculture and livestock sector for mass production of food and agricultural products. He also shared that various schemes from the government are available to encourage establishment of commercial farms with only 4% interest, in which people lament over how and where to access such facilities. Hon’ble Lyonpo advised people to seek assistant from geog extensions and local governments’ in availing such loans.
The government has also plans to develop irrigation facility, food processing units, provide better seeds and farm mechanization and one window shop in all the geogs, so that people need not have to travel all the way to town for few necessity goods. He also suggested in benefits of forming farmers groups and cooperatives where group can acquire better breed of cattle instead of having so many unproductive cattle which seems dairy farming is one possibility in country’s self sufficiency. The discussions were also held on farm roads, Tshamdro, wheat harvester/mill and relocation of Eusu RNR centre.
HE Lyonpo visited the cold water fishery Center, during his visit Lyonpo was able to meet and interact with the staff and discussed about their issues and potential site for such projects and development of cold water fishery in rest of the dzongkhags. Besides he also visited Haa cooperatives sale counter, Toorsa National Park, Forest division, Geog extension Centers and BAFRA office.
Reported by: Karma Tenzin
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