An international training workshop on “Characterization of rice growing environments for dissemination of stress-tolerant varieties in South Asia” was held on 24-26 July 2013 at Hotel Annapurna in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Sudhanshu Singh, IRRI’s rainfed lowland agronomist (South Asia) welcomed the delegates to the event and highlighted the importance of the training. A.N. Singh, consultant (GIS), presented the overview, course rational and expectation of the training workshop.
NARC Executive Director D.B. Gurung, on his inaugural address, stated “STRASA has made the excellent accomplishment in targeted dissemination of the stress-tolerant rice varieties in a very short time by using Remote Sensing and GIS techniques and applications in India and Bangladesh. I am very keen to see IRRI replicating such initiative in Nepal in near future.” He also applauded contributions of IRRI particularly the STRASA & EC-IFAD programs in capacity building of Nepalese scientists and extension officials. Bhaba P. Tripathi, IRRI liaison scientist for Nepal, delivered the vote of thanks.
In the 3-day training, participants learned various tools and techniques of remote sensing, GIS and other geospatial technologies viz. drought assessment and monitoring system, characterization of drought, submergence and salinity prone areas and targeted dissemination, real time data collection and transfer, business management view to extension system, monitoring rice crop using satellite data for impact assessment and prospect of enhancing rice production in rainfed lowlands of South Asia through crop and natural resource management.
During the closing ceremony, U.S. Singh, South Asia regional project coordinator for STRASA welcomed the chief guest, Hon. Vijay Kumar Mallick, joint secretary, Ministry of Agriculture Development, Nepal, and briefed him on how STRASA became a successful model. Mr. Mallick emphasized in his closing remarks the importance of remote sensing and GIS tools and techniques in agriculture. He also shared experiences of Nepal in this field and solicited IRRI support in this area to identify and characterize the targeted areas for dissemination of improved rice varieties.
A field visit was held on 26 July for the 35 participants. The training was made possible through the STRASA/EC-IFAD projects.
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