Advisor to Governor, Khurshid Ahmed Ganai on Monday inaugurated two day UGS-SAP sponsored national seminar on “Plant and Fungal Diversity: Status and Challenges and Symposium on Ecology” here at department of botany, university of Jammu.In his inaugural address, the advisor recounted the contribution of eminent researchers and teachers in holistic development of science and environment. He further said that biodiversity both of plants and animals is indispensable for human survival and therefore it should be priority area to work on.
Expressing concern over the shrinking forest cover in Jammu and Kashmir, the advisor opined that there is an ardent need for documentation and inventorying the bio-resources by all the research institutions of the State.
“A symbiotic interface between universities and agricultural institutions to plan strategy to conserve biodiversity is the need of the hour”, he said.
He also assured the university of Jammu of all possible support from the state administration for management plan for protecting the state bio-resources for posterity.He appreciated the achievements and accomplishments of the university of Jammu, in general and the department of botany, in particular.
Ganai also stressed on solid waste management in the State and in that direction suggested that the university of Jammu should devise the strategies for finding solutions to the scientific disposal of the waste management.
In his keynote address, Dr JL Karihaloo–former director ICAR-NBPGR, New Delhi talked about unique qualities and potentialities with respect to yield, quality and adaptability of the land races and wild crop relatives including rice, barley, apple, alliums, saffron and sea buckthorn.
He gave an overview of the systematic collection and long term conservation measures of germ-plasm in the wide range of these species. Dr Karihaloo further said that a multidimensional procedure including cryopreservation, gene banks, seed banks are suitable tools for conserving the species of interest.
Prof Manoj Dhar, vice-chancellor, university of Jammu in his presidential remarks said that university of Jammu has initiated a major project with the support of department of biotechnology (DBT), government of India to conserve 450 varieties of apple collected from Kashmir Valley, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarkhand at Bhaderwah Campus, which will be made available for further research and development of horticulture.
Prof Dhar talked about the importance of fungi in plant and animal world and gave an updated data about the diversity of fungi and plants world over.