Dr. Madhukar B. Khetmalas,
M. Sc. Agri. (KKV, Dapoli), Ph D Biol (MUN, Canada)
Director, Agriculture (Education),
Agriculture and Allied Colleges, Loni &
Center for Biotechnology,
PIMS, Loni (Deemed to be University).
Recently agriculture has changed a lot over a period of time. This change is due to the fact of industrialization since independence, due to the effect of global climate change, adoption of hybrid cultivars, due to mechanization, fertilization, irrigation, and practices of biotic and abiotic stress management, and so on.
India, in particular, is facing a serious problem of per capita land holding which has been decreased from 5 ha during the independence to 1.32 ha as of 2000-01, which has been predicted to decline further 0.68 ha in 2020.
It is, therefore, a major challenge in front of agricultural scientists, policy makers and farmers is to develop technologies, agricultural practices, cultivars, animal breeds, agricultural processing, storage and marketing to meet the needs of burgeoning population from shrinking natural resources, particularly, land and fresh water coupled with uncertain climatic conditions.
Recently, it has been projected / predicted that the country will require 25.8 million of skilled manpower in various sectors of agriculture. The various sectors agriculture includes: Agriculture, Agricultural Biotechnology, Agricultural Marketing, Agricultural Engineering & Processing, Dairy development and meat production, sericulture, forestry, medicinal plants, horticulture and fishery.
In order to capitalize on the opportunities and to convert shortcomings / weaknesses into opportunities we, at PRES’s College of Agriculture and Allied Sciences (CAAS) which includes College of Agriculture Biotechnology (CABT - 2003), College of Agriculture Business Management (CABM - 2011) , College of Agriculture (CA - 2012), and Agriculture poly-technique (A-poly - 1886) and Diploma in Dairy Development (DDD - 2001) attempted to visualize the need of highest quality of agriculture education equipped with the state of the art facilities to provide individual student-centric hands on skills / training from current scenario to five years down the line.
Colleges being in rural areas there have been a phenomenal growth of these colleges in terms of intake capacity, number of laboratories, space, land, equipments, farm animals, etc. The overall 100 % admission is clearly indicates the success of agricultural education at PRES, Loni.
The Principal, faculty and non-teaching staff members in here are committed for all round excellence. The dynamic, visionary guidance of the renowned Vikhe Patil family working day and night since last four generation for transforming the rural structure through providing the education, skill and employment is the evergreen. The PRES, Pravaranagar management body led by Hon. Namdar Shri. Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil is the encouraging force behind all the endeavors and overall development of the students.
I wish all the students a very bright new year and great success ahead.