The Union Minister for Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Shri Narendra Singh Tomar has said that along with wheat and rice, millets should also find a respectable place again in the food plate. With the aim of promoting nutri-cereals in the country and the world, under the leadership of India, the International Year of Millets, announced by the United Nations, will be celebrated in the year 2023, for which Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi took the initiative and 72 countries have supported this proposal of India.
Shri Tomar said this as the chief guest at the Agriculture Leadership and Global Nutrition Conclave in New Delhi today. Shri Tomar said that the Covid pandemic has made all of us realize the importance of health and nutritional security. It is very important to include nutrition in our diet. Celebrating the International Year of Millets will increase domestic and global consumption of millets, which will also increase employment and strengthen the economy. He said that whatever has been given to us by Indian tradition, culture and practice, the natural products and nature’s bounty are surely perfect to keep any human being healthy, but many times time passes and in the name of modernity, due to our hectic lifestyles, many times we forget the good things gradually and in the name of progress we adopt many other things in our life. Progress is necessary, but if progress is in harmony with nature, then it is better for all of us, for humanity and for the country. Today we find many things and buy them at expensive prices, among them there are many such whose seeds are not kept by anyone or farmers do not even sow them, but even today they are produced naturally, according to the season. Those who have come to know their quality, they use them. God has also taken care of the balance.
Shri Tomar said that millets are not a new commodity in our country. Earlier obviously facilities were less, but the fabric of our agricultural sector, village and society was such that even small farmers used to do farming as per their requirement and used to take the surplus food grains to the market. Gradually, there was competition for more profits while farming, due to which the cultivation of commodities changed and dependence on wheat and paddy increased. Our farmers are able to provide enough food to the country, while we are also supplying to the world, but gradually the place of Millets in our food plates decreased, in the competition of prestige Millets disappeared from the plate but now when our country is leading in the production of most of the food grains and horticulture, attention is drawn towards the nutritious grains. Today there is a need for nutrition, research is also being done very deeply, it is being analyzed closely. Lectures are being held at various places, scholars are pondering and it is being said that millets are necessary for good health. In this regard, Prime Minister Shri Modi had said that we should work for millets and on his initiative, millets are being promoted in the country and the world like yoga, production and consumption of millets are increasing on the call of the Prime Minister.
Several dignitaries including Mr. William Dar, former Agriculture Minister of Philippines were present on the occasion.