Page 16 - Science India August 2022
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Swatantrata ka Amrut Mahotsava
   (present Indian Agricultural Research Institute) with a college for advanced agriculture training was established at Pusa in 1905. The institute came up with a grant of £30,000, and its direc- tor was the agriculture advisor to the Government of India until 1929.
Land records and economic facts of each district/ village were separated
from agricultural activities. Experts, mostly from the West, were appointed to various specialised branches. Staff at the provincial centres was supposed to reach villages and address issues of local farmers. Experimental farms were expected to specialise in research in cropping and cultivation techniques required in the region. Lack of sufficient staff, slowdown of administration and the World Wars hindered the initiative. In 1868, Agriculture School at Saidapet, first of its kind in India, was established in Madras Presidency to train students as practical farmers. On the contrary, the college trained students were consid- ered suitable only to occupy subordinate
Image Courtesy: The Graphic 27 Feb 1897, Creative Commons
posts in revenue and other departments. The British desired to fill subordinate positions by Indians through non-farm training at the institute. Even if Indi- ans succeeded in getting a diploma in agriculture, they were always offered assistant positions.
Agricultural colleges were estab- lished in Pune, Kanpur, Sabour, Nag-
Above: Gobardanga Zamindar House in North 24 Parganas, West Bengal. The British created the class of zamindars with the Permanent Settlement of 1793 who lived lavishly at the expense of toiling farmers Left: A grain market
pur and Lyallpur (now in Pakistan). An All-India Board of Agriculture was established in 1905 to connect provin- cial governments with each other and make recommendations to the govern- ment. On the recommendation of the Royal Commission on Agriculture, which reviewed the position of agricul- ture in India, the Imperial Council of Agricultural Research (present ICAR) was established on 16 July 1929. The institute was supposed to guide research activities of central and provincial de- partments all over India, and address the problems in agriculture. Policy guidelines and other factors saw that only a small portion of wealthy cultiva- tors benefit from the scheme while small farmers were left out. The Imperial gov-
Image Courtesy: Wikimedia Commons

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