New Delhi, Sep 12 (PTI) Jal Shakti Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Saturday attended a virtual meeting of G-20 agriculture and water ministers, a statement said. The meeting was also attended by Minister of State (MoS) for Agriculture and Farmer's Welfare Parshottam Rupala. Shekhawat assured the forum of India's commitment to contribute towards the objectives, goals and targets set by G-20. He said Government of India is implementing the 'Jal Jeevan Mission' to provide household tap connections to 190 million rural homes, thereby ensuring drinking water security. About Open Defecation Free India, they were informed about the efforts to sustain the gains of 'Swachh Bharat Mission', with more focus on solid and liquid waste management and grey water treatment and reuse, the statement said. Shekhawat stated that technology plays a critical role in the prevailing pandemic situation and applauded India's IT expertise which it shares with the whole world. As a part of this dialogue, a three-day meeting was organised from September 10 to 12.
'India will be part of G-20 Troika from December, 2020 and host G-20 Presidency from December, 2021 to November, 2022 when it celebrates its 75 years of Independence, which will be an excellent opportunity for G-20 member countries to explore the cultural heritage and various aspects of the world's largest democracy and ancient civilisation,' the statement said.
Stating that agriculture is a high priority sector for Government of India, Rupala mentioned the policy measures taken by the government to ensure food security. He also reiterated India's resolve to work together in collaboration to enhance productivity, sustainable use of natural resources, development of agriculture value chain and promotion of trade for the benefit of people. He also informed them about the protocols developed by India to use drones for spraying of pesticides for timely control of dessert locusts and appealed to the G-20 member countries to work in tandem and come up with an action plan for trans-boundary pest and diseases to safeguard agricultural crops.
He also appealed to G-20 member countries to share knowledge and best practices to reduce the ill-effects of climate change that could affect agriculture and livelihoods of farmers. PTI PR AAR AAR