India and Israel government to convert 150 villages into ‘Villages of Excellence’ says Union Agriculture minister Narendra Singh Tomar.
The Centre announced on Friday that it has decided to convert up to 150 villages in 12 states into ‘Villages of Excellence,’ with technical assistance from the Israeli government.
Already, the Israeli government has set up 29 Centre of Excellence (CoEs) in 12 states, which produce over 25 million vegetable crops, over 3,87,000 quality fruit plants, and can train around 1.2 lakh farmers every year.
The 150 villages located near CoEs will be transformed into ‘Villages of Excellence.’ ‘Of which, 75 villages are being taken up in the first year to mark the anniversary the 75th year of India’s independence, where India and Israel will function together,’ Union Agriculture Minister Narendra Singh Tomar said on January 27 in a meeting with the new Israeli Ambassador to India Naor Gilon.
According to an official statement, the Minister expressed joy at the completion of 30 years of diplomatic relations between India and Israel and stated that the government is satisfied with the functioning of 29 CoEs.
Mr. Gilon, Israel’s Ambassador, stated that these CoEs are a wonderful example of cooperation between the two countries and proposed certification of CoEs to further improve the standards and quality of services offered to farmers.
He also expressed an interest in expanding collaboration with the agri-research body ICAR and making available the most up-to-date technologies available in Israel. Mr. Gilon also extended an invitation to Mr. Tomar to visit Israel.