Sikkim has formally become India’s first fully organic state after it successfully implemented organic farming practices on around 75,000 hectares of agricultural land.
Formal declaration in this regard was made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi after inaugurating the Sikkim Organic Festival 2016 in Gangtok, Sikkim. PM also handed the Organic Certificate to Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Chamling.
The Sikkim Organic Festival 2016 has been organised on the sidelines of the National Conference on Sustainable Agriculture and Farmers Welfare.
On this occasion, PM also launched three new orchid species developed in Sikkim which is also known as the Land of Flowers viz. Cymbidium Sardar (named after Sardar Patel), Cymbidium Deen Dayal (named after Deen Dayal Upaddhyay) and Cymbidium Namo (named after Narendra Modi).
- The journey of landlocked Sikkim to become organic state was initiated in 2003 after Pawan Chamling-led government had decided to make state an organic farming state.
- Later state government had banned entry and sale of chemical inputs for farmland in phases and also moved away from subsidies to farmers for purchasing chemical inputs.
- It forced farmers in state to organic cultivation. Since then agricultural land in state was gradually converted to certified organic land by using organic practices.
- For this state had implemented principles ad guidelines prescribed in National Programme for Organic Production (NPOP).
What is organic farming?
- The organic farming is free of chemical inputs such as pesticides and fertilizers. It tries to strike a harmonious balance with a complex series of ecosystems by rejuvenating it.
- This form of agriculture completely relies on traditional techniques such as green manure, green compost, biological pest control and crop rotation.
What are its benefits?
- In the long term, organic farming leads in subsistence of agriculture, bio-diversity conservation and environmental protection.
- It is form of sustainable farming that will also help in building and improving the soil health resulting in sustainable increase in crop production.