In continuation of the celebration of “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav” and on the occasion of “National Science Day” on 28th February 2022, the School of Agriculture (SOA) organized a Webinar on ‘Livelihood Opportunity in Indian Insect Industry’ for the students of Agricultural Sciences. The Guest Speaker of the event was Dr Narendra Kumar Bhatia, Scientist-D & Officer In-charge Zonal Coordinator, Northwest India Silkworm Seed Production Centre, National Silkworm Seed Organization, Central Silk Board, Ministry of Textiles, Government of India, Dehradun, Uttarakhand.
The webinar was started by a welcome address by Prof (Dr) M P Singh, Dean SOA explained to the students about the future opportunities in science and technology. He also talked about the application of Artificial Intelligence (AI), Remote Sensing (RS), Drone Technology (DT), Simulation Technologies, and many other modern technologies in Agriculture. He shared with the students that the Indian insect industry is emerging and has an excellent scope in agriculture because of the ample number of career opportunities.
Dr Narendra Bhatia covered all aspects related to the scope in the Indian insect industry including beekeeping and silkworm rearing and the importance of its byproducts like honey, wax, silk which have medicinal importance, and are very useful for livelihood security. He provided information about the role of the honey-bee in improving the growth of agricultural crop yield by helping in pollination. He said that Insects are an extremely underutilized, yet very efficient and eco-friendly living resource and are only beginning to be explored by the industrialized world. Silk is a way of life and no ritual is completed without silk in India. He explained the history of silk production and the silk route system. It is an inseparable part of Indian culture and traditions. Sericulture is the art and technique of silk production. It is an ancient industry in India dating back to the second century B.C. Traditionally, India dwells in the rural areas; its economy is largely dependent on the success of agriculture and allied farm activities as more than 70 percent of the people’s livelihood security is dependent on this sector. Sericulture, being an agro-based industry plays a predominant role in shaping the economic destiny of the rural people and fits very well in India’s rural structure, where agriculture continues to be the main industry. India has a number of distinct silk weaving clusters that are known for unique designs, weaves, colours, patterns, traditional knowledge (TK), and processes that are specific to a geographical region, and are guarded for centuries. Over the period, these products have become a brand by themselves and recognized by their place of origin. Muga silks of Assam, Mysore silks of Mysore (Karnataka), Kanchipuram silks of Kanchi (Tamil Nadu), Brocades of Banaras (Uttar Pradesh), Pochampally sarees, Gadwal silks (Andhra Pradesh) are just to cite a few. Globalization has brought about enormous challenges to trade and industry. So it becomes quite significant to seek opportunities in the insect industry. The session ended with the questionnaire round and vote of thanks by Dr Rajendra Prasad, HoD, SOA.