Odishatv Bureau

Bengaluru: The 107th Indian Science Congress (ISC) from January 3-7 in this tech hub would focus on the growth of farmers and development of rural India, an official said on Monday.

"The focal theme of the 5-day ISC is on bridging the gap between urban and rural India and improving the quality of farmers' life through science and technology", ISC Association President K.S. Rangappa told reporters.

With the University of Agricultural Sciences (UAS) organising the annual event at its sprawling GKVK campus on the city's northern outskirts, a whole day (January 6) is dedicated to farmers as farming is an integral part of rural development.

"The farmers' science congress will provide a forum to innovative farmers across the country to interact, share their experiences, success, failures and showcase their innovative techniques/methods developed and followed by them in farming", said Rangappa.

Innovative farmers, 120 of them, have been selected to participate in the event by the New Delhi-based Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) and UAS, from 11 zones across the country, with 10 of them from each zone and 20 from the south zone.

"A representative of the state-run Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVK) will accompany the farmers from their respective zones for the event. Extension workers from each zone will also participate in their congress," said UAS Vice-Chancellor S. Rajendra Prasad on the occasion.

Though Prime Minister Narendra Modi will inaugurate the main event, Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare Kailash Choudhary will open the farmers' science congress on January 6.

With agrarian crisis gripping the country and the farming sector's contribution to the national Gross Domestic Product (GDP) stagnating, the day-long farmers' session will focus on innovation in integrated agriculture and entrepreneurship for doubling farmers' income.

"Climate change, bio-diversity, conservation, ecosystem services and farmers empowerment will be discussed in parallel sessions along with one on agrarian distress, bio-entrepreneurship and policy issues," said Prasad.

The national event will also have concurrence sub-events on Women's Science Congress on January 5-6, Children's Science Congress on January 4-6 and Science Communicators meet on January 5-6.

"A science exhibition (Pride of India) will also be held at the venue on all the five days to showcase latest developments in science and technology the world over, leading products and services, path-breaking research and developments (R&D) initiatives, schemes and achievements of the public and private sectors.