In a move that could expedite the construction of BRICS agriculture research centre, divisional commissioner Alok Sinha has directed the Meerut district magistrate to identify 20 acres of land for purpose. Recently, the Union ministry of agriculture and farmers welfare had asked the UP government for land in the National Capital Region (NCR).

With a mission for sustainable and competitive agriculture development and poverty alleviation through strategic cooperation in agriculture in BRICS countries, the Union government has decided to set up agriculture research centre in NCR. In his letter to the state government, director of department of agricultural research and education (DARE) Rajan Agarwal stated that during his participation at the BRICS summit at Russia on July 9, Prime Minister Narendra Modi proposed the setting up of BRICS agriculture research centre.

“It was also suggested to establish a system whereby BRICS countries can cooperate for production and investment in infrastructure in major agriculture rich nations. Accordingly, DARE has finalised a concept note for establishment of the centre. India will host the 8th BRICS summit sometime during 2016. It would be ideal to inaugurate the proposed centre during the summit in India,” the letter reads.

Rajan Agarwal requested the state government to identify at least 20 acre land in any district of NCR for setting up the centre. Following the letter, the principal secretary of UP directed the divisional commissioner of Meerut to identify the land.

According to district administration sources, besides the agriculture department, the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel University of Agriculture and Technology is also asked to figure out the land and inform the same to the DM office. “We have asked the agriculture university in this regard, as it will be beneficial for them also if the said centre is set up here. The university has plenty of land with it and there must not be any difficulty for the varsity’s authority to spare a plot of land for the said work,” an officer seeking anonymity said.