As of the next academic year, nine fields, including agriculture and horticulture, will be recognized as professional fields. Admission to these courses will be based on a common entrance test. The state government announced the decision after receiving mandatory authorization from the Indian Agricultural Research Council (ICAR), an autonomous organization under the Union Ministry of Agriculture. Of the 12 courses that the state government had offered for recognition as professional courses, nine were granted status. Courses offered at the undergraduate level include agriculture, horticulture, agricultural engineering, sericulture, forestry, food technology, biotechnology, home or community science, food nutrition, and diabetes.
Experts said the move came after several years of demands, mostly from the Indian Agricultural University Alumni Association. “The decision should not only streamline Allied prices, but also give current agriculture a desired boost,” they added. Former Mahatma Phule teacher from Pune Krishi Vidyalay said, “This is a welcome decision. From now on, the Department of Agriculture will obtain a technical status. This will benefit the entire industry.
According to agro-experts, this decision will also increase student participation, allowing them to express themselves on issues related to seed quality, water conservation and soil quality. “As the courses have acquired professional status, they can now include specialist requirements for related topics in agriculture. Indian agriculture increasingly needs attention at the micro level, ”he added. Jalyukta Shivar, one of the Maharashtra government’s flagship water conservation programs, was best implemented under the supervision of hydrologists and agricultural engineers, who were tasked with calculating the seepage water and runoff in areas facing crisis throughout the year.
In addition, the change in the nomenclature of the course can also supplement the courses at the secondary level of agriculture.
A senior official from the Meteorological Department of Agriculture of India said, “This will help improve the secondary stage of agriculture, including quality testing, planning of agriculture and exports. Climate resilient measures in agriculture can also be introduced and targeted. In 2016, the 5th committee of the dean of agriculture revised the program. At least 70 percent of all agricultural colleges’ curriculum is similar. Individual universities in different regions of the state, however, have included subjects as per the requirements of the respective regions.