Telangana slogans disrupt convocation address

Hyderabad, December 31: The 34th annual convocation of the Acharya NG Ranga Agricultural University (ANGRAU), held on the campus here today, was marred by proTelangana slogans.

As soon as vice chancellor P Raghava Reddy began his convocation address, some students seated in the front row of the balcony began shouting ‘Jai Telangana’ slogans and interrupted his address. The students were rounded up and whisked out of the auditorium by the police.

Resuming his speech, the vice chancellor highlighted the university’s achievements which included development of 17 new varieties and hybrids of crops. “Our university plays a vital role in the growth of agriculture through teaching, research and allied activities. Seventeen new varieties of crops/hybrids were developed by our university in this academic year, thereby bringing the total number of varieties and hybrids developed by the university over the years to 371,” he said.

The placement of the university helped around 400 students secure jobs this year, Raghava Reddy added.

Governor and chancellor ESL Narasimhan, who was to deliver the address, could not make it due to some pressing reasons. Eminent agricultural scientist MS Swaminathan, who was the chief guest, called for bridging of the knowledge gap between farmers and agricultural scientists. “Though agriculture is one of the riskiest professions today, it is unfortunate that there is no effective insurance cover to insulate farmers. On the other hand, there are a number of policies like the national policy for farmers that need to be taken to farmers,” said the MP.

Suggesting creation of a knowledge database and establishment of help centres at villages, he called upon students to set up agribusiness centres and `agri clinics’ for contributing their knowledge to the development of the farmers as the implementation of the Food Security Act would be possible only with farmers’ cooperation.