The “poor man’s source of protein” took centre stage at Miranda House on February 16, 2016 in a Seminar by the Department of Geography to celebrate the International Year of Pulses 2016, as declared by the 68th UN General Assembly.
The Seminar saw the coming together of three eminent speakers who shared their study, ideas, perspectives, and solutions with students, faculty and participants on the theme of Does India Need a Pulses Revolution? Dr. Ashok Vishandass, former Chairman, Commission for Agricultural Costs and Prices, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Govt. of India spoke on ‘Deficiency in Production of Pulses in India: Its Diagnosis and A Policy Prescription towards Self Sufficiency’. He emphasised on the policy induced bias against pulses in the last five decades and a need to address the pulse procurement machinery to instil confidence among farmers to sell their produce at MSP. Dr. Arindam Banerjee of the School of Liberal Studies, Ambedkar University Delhi spoke on ‘Perspectives on Food and Nutritional Security in India’. He brought to light the dynamics of the food-grain market, the trends and rationales of the demand for pulses. Dr A Amarender Reddy, Principal Scientist & Faculty Member, Division of Agricultural Economics, IARI, New Delhi spoke on ‘Production Technology, Accessibility and Affordability of Pulses: Implication on Poverty and Nutrition’. His discourse included crop improvement and research and enhancing profitability of pulses production.
The Speaker Session was followed by the Paper Presentation Competition. Ten shortlisted participants put their best foot forward as they took their stance on pulses revolution in India. The competition was judged by Ms Sulagna Chattopadhyay, co-founder & Editor of Geography and You, Dr. Bashabi Gupta, and Dr. Anindita Sarkar, of Miranda House. The efforts of the presentors were much appreciated by the three judges, who also shared with them valuable suggestions and advice to further build up on the skill of writing a research paper. The first position was awarded to Rashmirekha Pandit, II Year student of B.A. (Hons) Geography, Miranda House. Vaibhav Khare, II Year student of B.Tech (ECE), SRM University, Chennai stood second and Mahima Shokhanda of Shivaji College, University of Delhi stood third. The winning paper gets a chance to be published in the ISSN and RNI accredited magazine, Geography and You and a cash prize of INR Fifteen Thousand. The event was sponsored by Geography and You.
RashmiRekha Pandit won the Best Paper Award at the Student Paper Presentation Competition
The day also saw the unveiling of the Annual Department Magazine, Geographica’16. The magazine celebrates the completion of 50 glorious years this session with a special Golden Jubilee Section. Earlier, the Department had held its Annual Fest Globe on February 5, 2016, and an Alumni Meet, on February 6, 2016 as part of its Golden Jubilee Celebrations. “Geographica’16 is the result of 4 long months of determination, and hardwork. It would not have been possible without the constant guidance and support from our Staff Advisors, Mrs. Punam Behari, and Dr. Bashabi Gupta. The Editorial team has put in immense amount of work to bring out the magazine.”, said Sanjana Kumari, the Editor-in-Chief, and a final year student at the Department.
The daylong Seminar was an excellent platform for students to explore and understand the realm of pulses and build ideas to revolutionize pulses in India.
(Written by Vasudha Singh, BA Geography (hons) III Year, Miranda House)