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Manipur agri varsity unveils weather-resilient paddy varieties
 IMPHAL, Jan 12 - Central Agricultural University (CAU), the largest agricultural university in the country having 13 colleges in the North East with its headquarters here, has released four paddy varieties with weather-resilient properties in the last five years.

This was disclosed by CAU Vice Chancellor Dr M Premjit Singh while talking to reporters on the sidelines of a function here recently. There are six Krishi Vigyan Kendras under the university across the North East, excluding Assam.

The four paddy varieties are CAU-R1 (Tamphaphou), CAU-R2 (Tomthinphou), CAU-R3 (Mangalphou) and CAU-R4 (Enotphou).

Tamphaphou, a high-yielding paddy variety, has the highest demand in the State due to its taste and weight, while Tomthinphou is a short-duration variety suitable for ‘jhum’ cultivation, said Dr Premjit Singh. On the other hand, Enotphou is a flood-resilient paddy and Mangalphou is a short-duration variety suitable for subtropical plains and hills, he added.

The CAU is also in the process of developing seven more plant varieties and 98 technologies. It has filed applications for two patents in the last five years, the VC stated. The applications were of a technology to convert pineapple juice into powder without altering the favour and the ‘Thangjing’ (makhana or fox nuts) harvester.

The 27-year-old university has also adopted 20 model fruit villages in the North East, including three in Manipur, to increase the income of underprivileged farmers and promote production of different fruit varieties, Dr Premjit Singh said, adding that the university has also planted more than one lakh saplings of fruit-bearing trees, in accordance with the Prime Minister’s initiative to double farmers’ income by 2022.

Stating that 435 metric tonnes of quality seeds were distributed to farmers, the CAU VC said that the university was ranked 13 among 75 agricultural varsities in the country in 2018.

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