16 February 2017 Current Affairs: The Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved establishment of Food Legumes Research Platform (FLRP) at Amlaha in Sehore, Madhya Pradesh with Satellite Hubs in West Bengal and Rajasthan.
Cabinet approval confers FLRP an international status as contemplated in Clause 3 of the United Nations (Privileges and Immunities) Act, 1947. It authorizes the Department of Agricultural Research (DARE) on behalf of Union Government in all matters regarding establishment of the Platform.
The FLRP will be established by International Centre for Agricultural Research in Dry Areas (ICARDA) for meeting the emerging food security challenges. Under it, ICARDA will carry out research through a multi-disciplinary team of scientists for enhancing productivity of crops range-land and livestock.
It will enable India to harness the best of international science in meeting the emerging food security challenges.
It will help India to rapidly and effectively absorb research output in the agriculture. It will be a major international research & development (R&D) institution that will make India even bigger centre for agricultural research in the world.
This in turn will attract further R&D investment in the country. The research output through this centre will benefit farmers (big, small or marginal) of all regions and technologies developed will be available for all farmers in equitable and inclusive manner.
This platform will contribute significantly towards reducing poverty, improving food security, improving nutrition and health, and sustaining the natural resource base.
International Centre for Agriculture Research in the Dry Areas (ICARDA) : ICARDA is a non-profit agricultural research for development institute that aims to improve the livelihoods of the resource-poor across the world’s dry areas. It was established in 1977. Its research activities include the development of new crop varieties, conservation agriculture, water harvesting, diversification of production systems, integrated crop/livestock production systems, and empower rural women. ICARDA has a good track record of innovation, including in climate resilient technologies such as suitable food legume varieties for dry-land production systems.