Harmful impacts of parthenium weed, also called congress grass or gajar grass, were highlighted during the week-long ‘Parthenium Awareness Week’ conducted by School of Agriculture, Shoolini University.
Plans for controlling the noxious weed, which is spreading at a very fast pace across the country, were discussed by progressive farmers, students and faculty members of the University. The weed is adversely affecting environment and health in general and agriculture land in particular.
During the week long campaign, the faculty and students were sensitised to eradicate and use the weed for compost through onsite demonstrations. They also participated in uprooting the weed in and around the campus.
Such awareness events were organised simultaneously at the national level from August 16 to 22.
On the opening day Dr. Y.S Negi, Dean, School of Agriculture welcomed the Chief guest Dr. P.K Khosla, Vice Chancellor of the University, Dr. Sunil Puri Registrar and Dr. D.R Sharma former Dean Bio-technology and Deans and Directors of the University.
Expert lectures on harmful effects and biocontrol of Parthenium were delivered by Dr. Lobzang Stanzen and Dr. Amit Kumar, respectively for the benefit of the participants. In his inaugural address, Prof Khosla emphasised that the spread of Parthenium is a serious problem affecting the society adversely which needs to be eradicated through concerted efforts.
The inaugural session was followed by field visits in and around the University campus for demonstration of uprooting the weed by taking appropriate precautionary measures. The field visits were conducted by the faculty of school of agriculture namely Dr. G.K Sharma, Dr. K. Kumar, Dr. S.K Gupta, Dr. Ashutosh Mohanty, Dr. Lobzang Stanzen, Dr. Amit Kumar, Dr. Mansoor Ali, Dr. Salena Janjua and Dr. Saloni Thakur.
Speaking to the participants, Dr Negi said it was a fast growing notorious weed and one-time measure will not suffice to check its growth. The school plans to make people aware of the weed and at the same time make sure that the university farms were free of parthenium. He said timely action to weed it out at the initial stage of its growth will be taken.
Dr. G. K Sharma, Director Extension Education, who was the chief guest at the concluding day, emphasised on the importance of the eradication of the dreaded weed and appealed to make it a regular feature. During the campaign, several villages were covered to create awareness on eradication of parthenium.