Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K. Sangma on Tuesday said that the government has a commitment to the farming community of the State and is engaging with them through different programmes to understand their issues and concerns.
“Our visit to Songsak is aimed at understanding issues and problems being
faced by the people at the grassroot level. As a government we want to formulate better programs and policies that would benefit our people,” he said, while interacting with farmers producers groups and agri entrepreneurs at Prime Hub Songsak in East Garo Hills.
He was accompanied by Govt Chief Whip Marcuise Marak during his visit and interaction programme at Prime Hub.
He informed that the government is leveraging the potentials of the farmers by adopting various interventions, which will be beneficial to them. “Prime Hubs are one such initiative of the government to handhold our farmers, producer groups, and agri entrepreneurs. Through this, we will help our farmers to realise better incomes by providing better market credit linkages, technical know-how and value addition to their products,” the Chief Minister added.
He also informed that the government is in the process of setting up Prime Hubs across the State.
During the interaction programme, the Chief Minister distributed cheques to the farmer producer groups.
Farmer Producers Groups comprises individuals with similar farming and income generating activities, who collectively come together under a single platform. Each individual in the group is given financial aid of Rs. 5000 as seed capital.
He informed that the government has earmarked a substantial amount for the farmer producer groups. “SHGs and Nano enterprises can also avail interest free loans from the initiative,” he added.
During the interaction, the SHGs and farmers producers groups spoke about various problems being faced by them. Some of the issues highlighted were – access to good markets for their produce, connectivity, finances, access to quality seeds and planting material, etc.
Some of the beneficiaries also requested the Chief Minister if more training could be provided for scientific management of plantations.
The Chief Minister has assured to look into the issues and challenges highlighted during the interaction programme.
He also distributed certificates to beneficiaries, who completed three months training in Masonry/Plumbing held at Bakdil Training Centre Walbakgre Tura, funded by the Meghalaya Basin Development Agency.