The Dr GS Khush Foundation in collaboration with the Punjab Agricultural University organized a symposium in honor and memory of prominent geneticist Dr DS Brar at the Dr Manmohan Singh Auditorium here today. The two-day symposium, ‘Transforming the Green Revolution Hub of India: Innovations in Crop Breeding, Resource Management and Policy’, focused on the enhancement of farmers’ income through the promotion of sustainable agriculture. The inaugural session began with the conferment of the first ‘Dr Darshan Singh Brar Award’ to Dr SS Banga, DAE Raja Ramanna Fellow, Professor (Honorary Adjunct), PAU, Ludhiana and former ICAR fellow, followed by Dr Darshan Singh Brar memorial lecture,’ My journey with Brassicas’, delivered by Dr Banga.
Dr Ramesh Chand, Member NITI Aayog delivered the Inaugural Lecture on the topic, Reimagining Punjab Agriculture for Enhancing Farmers’ Income and Sustainability of Farming Systems. Dr Rajinder Singh Sidhu, Former PAU Registrar coordinated the session, while Dr Sardara Singh Johl, Former Chancellor, of the Central University of Punjab was the chair.
Under the symposium theme, ‘Towards a Post Green Revolution Scenario’, the Lead Lecture was delivered by Dr Pritam Singh, Emiritus Professor of Economics, Oxford Business School, UK. Dr Singh discussed the ecological challenge of the state and how it should shape the social, educational and socio-cultural policy in Punjab.
Under the second theme of the symposium, ‘Innovations in Plant Breeding for Sustainable Agriculture’, Dr Arvind Kumar, DDG Research ICRISAT, Dr Ajay Kohli, Director Research, IRRI Philippines, Dr Padam Prakash Bhojvaid, IFS, Former Director, FRI, Dehradun, Dr Anand Pandravada, Corteva Agriscience, Dr Kulwinder Singh Gill, Washington State University, USA and Dr Jaswinder Singh, McGill University, Canada, shared their experiences on topics like genomics assisted innovative breeding for benefit of small farmers, reducing the carbon imprint in the green revolution hub of India and new innovations in cereal breeding. The session was coordinated by Dr NS Bains, Former Director of research, PAU and Dr Deepak Pental, For Delhi University Vice Chancellor was the chair.
The symposium also included panel presentations and discussions by experts. Former PAU Vice Chancellor, Dr BS Dhillon and Dr KS Aulakh graced the occasion with their presence. The special session of the day shed light on creation of agricultural scientists of the future, with special emphasis on student centred learning strategies. The lead speaker and session coordinator was Dr Anuradha Agarwal, National Coordinator, National Agricultural Higher Education Project, ICAR, while Dr GK Sangha, Former Dean PGS was the chair. PAU experts, Dr Sandeep Bains, Dean College of Community Science, Dr Vishal Bector, Associate Director, Industrial Linkages, Dr SK Dhillon, Professor, Department of Plant Breeding, Dr JS Sandhu, Principal Biotechnologist, Dr Harminder Singh, Principal Fruit Scientist and others participated in panel discussion and presentations.
Dr Kuldeep Singh, Secretary Dr GS Khush Foundation and Dr Vishal Bector conducted the event. Deans and Directors of the University including Dr Shammi Kapoor, Registrar, Dr Ashok Kumar, Director Extension Education, Dr Jaskarn Singh Mahal, Former Director Extension Education, Dr Tejinder Singh Riar, Additional Director, Communication were present at the occasion. A large number of serving and retired scientists, students from different parts of the country and abroad were in attendance at the event.