Srinagar, July 11: J&K state consumes 400 lakh kgs of mutton annually.
Out of the total demand of 400 lakh kilograms of mutton, 110 lakh kgs are produced locally and the remaining 290 lakh kilograms are being imported from outside state.
Deliberating about the need to enhance State’s mutton production, Principal Secretary Dr. Asgar Samoon stressed for taking adequate steps so that the local production is increased, saying the State has a good chance to do that as it is bestowed with excellent natural grazing facilities.
Highlighting the need to hold frequent awareness camps, Samoon explained through these camps the unemployed youth could be made aware with various options including sheep farming, fish farming, poultry farming and other allied sectors they could take up to earn their livelihood.
He added that people also need to be made aware regarding the benefits of centrally-sponsored schemes.
The meeting was informed that the department provides a herd of 25 sheep to each individual interested in sheep raring at the subsidized rates, where the Department will be paying 30 per cent of its price and rest money will be provided by J&K bank on low interest.
Besides, the farmers would also be provided with the benefits of insurance and health benefits for their livestock.
During the meeting, Samoon also directed to shift the Directorate office of Animal Husbandry Srinagar to city outskirts at a suitable place.
It was also decided that two separate “horse farms” would be established at Pahalgam and Gulmarg. The meeting was told that a 30-Kanal land has already been identified for setting up a horse farm at Kathua.
Samoon also stressed on adopting the latest techniques at Semen Frozen laboratory Ranbirbagh. Besides he also directed for the opening of clinics for pet animals at the district level.
Among others, Director Animal Husbandry Kashmir Mohammad Yusuf Chaproo, Director Fisheries R N Pandita, Director Sheep Husbandry Mohammad Shareef, Officers from Finance, Planning, Agriculture Production and other allied-departments were present in the meeting.