AGRICULTURE AND IRRIGATION
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH AND EDUCATION
Agricultural research: Research forms an important plank in the development of agriculture, and also serves as a basis towards all-round progress. Scientific and technological research makes a fundamental contribution towards the development of agriculture which has been vigorously undertaken by the Agriculture Department. Work with regard to genetic improvement of crops and evolution of good quality, disease-resistant strains as also to propagation of sound agronomic practices and remedial measures for control of pests and diseases is being carried out at different research stations. This work is being undertaken with a view to maximise production for meeting the needs of the growing population and also to help various processing industries.
The research work is conducted under the technical guidance and supervision of the State level specialists who guide the work in their respective subjects of specialisation. The Deputy Director of Agriculture for Research and Education implements the approved research programme through research stations.
There are four agricultural research stations in Sholapur district The research under dry farming methods and problems on soils is carried out on the Agricultural Research Station, Sholapur (Mulegaon). The trial-cum-demonstration and seed supply in regard to sugarcane is done at the Government farm at Akluj. The research on millets and pulses particularly on jowar is done at Agricultural Research Station located at Mohol. There is also a research sub-centre for scientific soil management at Jeur.
The office of the Soil Specialist of Maharashtra State is at Sholapur. In so far as Sholapur district is concerned the survey of deep black soil in Mangalwedha taluka was carried out by the Soil Specialist with a view to studying the causes for low returns on these soils during
1964-65. It was revealed that the soils were very poor in organic status and nitrogen, and a dose of 44 kg. of nitrogen per hectare for rabi jowar was recommended.
There is one soil testing laboratory at Sholapur run by the Soil Specialist under Mahatma Phule Krishi Vidyapeeth where experiments pertaining to soil erosion are carried out and analysis of soil samples is made.
Agricultural education: Agricultural education forms one of the important activities of Agriculture Department. The object in imparting agricultural education is to train young men and research and extension workers at all levels in modern agricultural technology. Agricultural education in the State is imparted through agricultural colleges, agricultural schools, and gramsevak training centres.
Agricultural schools: For educating the younger generation of farmers in scientific farming in the district, one agricultural school was established at Sholapur by Zilla Parishad where a two-year diploma course in agriculture is conducted. The school has an yearly intake capacity for fifty students.
Soil Conservation Training Institute: The Soil Conservation Training Institute at Sholapur was opened for giving training in soil conservation. The training facilities are made available to Agricultural Officers, Supervisors and Agricultural Assistants as also to new entrants in the field of agriculture. The duration of the training course for Agricultural Officers and Supervisors extends for three months, while the training period for Agricultural Assistants and fresh candidates is of six months. There are four sessions of training for candidate belonging to the first category and two sessions for those belonging to the second category during the course of a year in this institute.