Virtual 56 Annual Rice Research Group Meeting - 19 - 20 April, 2021

IIRR organizes Virtual 56th Annual Rice Research Group Meeting (ARGM)  

On the occasion of 56th ARGM, a series of virtual group meetings were held for Entomology, Pathology, Crop production and Improvement from 8-15 Apr 2021 to discuss about the results of the trials conducted during 2020-21. AICRIP Center wise presentations were held during 16-17 Apr 2021.

The inaugural session of the virtual 56th Annual Rice Research Group Meeting was held at ICAR-Indian Institute of Rice Research, Hyderabad at 10 AM on April 19, 2021. Dr. D. Subrahmanyam, Director, ICAR-Indian Institute of Rice Research welcomed the dignitaries and delegates of AICRIP, QRT and RAC chairmen and members and delegates from IRRI and personnel from private seed and pesticide industry. Dr D. K. Yadava, ADG (Seed) stressed the importance of AICRIP system in India’s rice research and development program which has led to the record rice production in the country during 2019-2020 and 2020-2021. He also mentioned that India has been the global leader in Basmati rice production and export.He highlighted importance of bio-fortification of rice varieties and marker assisted selection in improvement of biotic and abiotic stress tolerance. He specifically mentioned the need for short duration high yielding rice verities and reiterated the role of private sector in hybrid rice research and development.

Dr. D. Subrahmanyam, Director, ICAR-IIRR presented highlights of AICRIP program of 2020. He stressed the importance of AICRIP in India’s rice research and development in spite of several challenges like uncertain climatic conditions, growing urbanization, shrinking of cultivated lands and several other biotic and abiotic problems. He emphasized the importance of review and planning of ongoing AICRIP activities for development and dissemination of technologies. Dr. Y. P. Singh, ADG (FFC) all the AICRIP cooperators for excellent conduct of the trials in spite of pandemic situation.

Prof. H. S. Gupta, Retd Director, ICAR-IARI and Chairman QRT (ICAR-IIRR) mentioned that India has emerged as the largest exporter of rice during 2020. He mentioned that during last 8 years, Rice AICRIP has released 391 varieties which includes 75 rice hybrids. He stressed this will help in boosting rice production in unfavorable areas.

Prof. TrilochanMohapatra, Hon’ble Secretary, DARE and DG, ICAR thanked all the participants and appreciated the efforts in carrying out the AICRIP work despite pandemic situations. He reiterated that inspite of pandemic situation, rice has done good with a production of nearly 119 million tons during last year. He expressed concerns about setting future targets by analyzing rate of increase in yield and  rate of genetic gain expecting in coming years  and  based on that planning on production requirement of the country vis-à-vis consumption Keeping in view the issues like climate change and increasing farmer’s income, we may need to divert some areas from rice to other less water requiring and more remunerative crops. He specifically mentioned that the appropriate actions should be taken against poor performing centers He suggested that a benchmark yield level should be fixed for different trials for promotion along with additional criteria on resistance against pest if the target area is endemic for any pest. He highlighted about significant increase in export of rice earning about 66 thousand crore rupees and the urge of analyzing the global demand and consumption pattern of rice to enhance the export and export oriented work in AICRIP trials. He suggested that production oriented survey should collect information regarding rice consumption pattern and varietal composition in different states or regions. He also pinpointed that the data from POS should be used to plan for large scale demonstration of newly released varieties. He stressed upon identifying best performing genotypes by analysing last five years data of nitrogen use efficiency trial. He also mentioned to conduct trials on nano-fertilizers and silicon spray on rice yield. He stated that production and protection technologies can be released during AICRIP meeting and a certificate can be issued and a recommendation should be prepared for the suggestions made in the  pesticide evaluation trials after 3 years of testing,. He also proposed to incorporate genes for 2 or 3 important stresses pertaining to target area in marker assisted breeding, Dr. Y. P. Singh thanked Hon’ble Director General for his in depth analysis and discussion. He also congratulated all the cooperators for good conduct of the trials. Following this session, two technical sessions were organized to present the consolidated results of  AICRIP trials conducted during 2020 and to finalise the technical programme for 2021.

A special session on IRRI ICAR collaborative Programme was held on 20th April 2021  followed by a presentation on “‘Impressions and Recommendations of QRT “by Dr. HS Gupta, Chairman QRT Committee, ICAR-IIRR. Subsequently a plenary session was conducted to present the technical programme of AICRIP trials planned for 2021. 56th ARGM  programme   ended with vote of thanks by Dr. R. M. Kumar.