Agriculture sector if given full concentration, can contribute more to GDP compare to other sectors of our economy. Tons of vegetables and fruits get wasted due to the inaccessibility to the markets as there is no proper mechanism and government concentration toward the sector in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa and FATA.
This was stated by Vice Chancellor of The University of Agriculture Peshawar Dr Khan Bahadar Marwat in an interview with The Frontier Post.
He said that Khyber Pukhtunkhwa enjoying monopoly in several items of vegetables and fruits but due to unprofessional bureaucrats seated in the agriculture sector, who do not have technical how-know about agriculture sector, the province could not get the benefit from the products which otherwise should have taken.
Dr Khan Bahadar said that seasonally large quantity of tomatoes and onions sometimes got wasted as it quantity exceed the demand. He added that it badly affect poor farmers and government should have an effective mechanism comprised of cold storage centers, paste companies, packing system where these vegetables and other items should be stored or pasted and then it should be exported to other countries in proper packing.
Talking about the farming techniques used in Pakistan, VC said that unfortunately large portion of agriculture land relying upon the rain, government should establish an effective irrigation system in these areas in order to get maximum output from it. He added that yet living in 21st century when most of the work is done to technologies but still old way of farming is experienced in the province while the farmers were also not fully trained about farming modern techniques therefore the output in our province remained nominal, he added.
VC asserted that Agriculture University was going to introduce one FM radio channel with contents solely on farming education and information about the new techniques of the farming as well as informing farmers about the climate change and other agro related problems and farmers through mobile SMS would be enabled to ask about any problem they face.
Agriculture University has contributed much for the welfare of farmers, verities of wheat’s seeds like Seran Atahabib and Jabaz, introduced by Dr. Zahoor and Dr. Fida of the varsity, which were used by 95 percent of the farmer in province have increased the output of wheat from 1.5 tons per hectors to 5 tons per hectors in last couples of years, VC claimed.
He said that researchers of the varsity have also introduced “Omega 3 Eggs” through breeding which has low cholesterol and were beneficial for heart patients. Besides this mushrooms, maze and wheat seeds, vegetables, quarks, chicken farming, turkey milks were also produced in the varsity for business purpose. Agriculture University providing consultations to PND as well as private people who were constructing their houses or doing plantations in their nurseries also hiring the expertise of the varsity faculty, VC informed.
Dr. Khan Bahadar Marwat belonging to Lukki Marwat got his masters and Ph.D degree in Botany from University of Peshawar and other Ph.D degree in Agriculture from USA, has produced 11 Ph.d and 33 M.phil scholars so far. He has given Pride of Performance Award from President of Pakistan Asif Ali Zardari this year as well as he has also received Medal of Science & Technology and Best University Teacher’s award in 2008 and 2005 respectively.
He has remained president of Asia Pacific Wed Sciences Society and he is member of Ph.D review committee of Higher Education Commission of Pakistan as well as member of board of governors with number of private universities. He has produced 200 research papers as well as three books on wed-sciences.