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'Honey Mission' blooms in Banaskantha

KVIC Chairman distributed 650 bee-boxes in a remote village Madal of Banaskantha district

Honey Mission   blooms in Banaskantha

A lot of water in Banas River might have flown from the time immemorial, but it seems another river is in making in this lush green area – having abundant flora and fauna, pomegranate and mustard – in the last two years. It may sound incredible though, a very few people must have anticipated that after December 10, 2016 – when Prime Minister Narendra Modi had stated that 'After Shwet Kranti, there is a need for Sweet Kranti' while introducing Banas Honey project at Deesa in Banaskantha district of Gujarat, a virtual river of sweet nectar would also flow through this area.

With a week ahead of the second anniversary of Prime Minister's clarion call of 'Sweet Kranti', its resultant 'Honey Mission' of the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) seems taking that call to a new high – particularly at its birthplace, with distribution of 2,450 bee-boxes and extracting 19,500 kilograms of finest honey.

KVIC Chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena, who distributed another 650 bee-boxes on December 3 in a remote village Madal of Banaskantha district, said that following the Prime Minister's call of 'Sweet Revolution', the KVIC immediately made an action plan on this line named 'Honey Mission' and started it from Gujarat. "We have decided to distribute 7,350 bee-boxes among the farmers in Gujarat in fiscal 2018-19, in which 5,770 bee-boxes have already been distributed among the farmers of Banaskantha, Arawali, Kutch and Dahod districts. Most of the beneficiaries hail from SC/ST and Tribal categories," he said, adding, "We have already identified the beneficiaries for the training and distribution of remaining 2,240 bee-boxes among SC/ST villagers of Valsad, Navsari, Tapi, Dahod, and Narmada district, besides general category villagers in Banaskantha, Patan and Bhuj/Kutch districts, under our 'Honey Mission' project in Gujarat."

The KVIC Chairman also distributed 500 saplings of Moringa trees to the farmers of Banaskatha district and also informed about the importance of the tree.

It may be mentioned here that so far KVIC has distributed 51,000 bee-boxes, across the country, which had happened for the very first time in India. The KVIC had not only distributed bee-boxes, rather it had also created more than 7,000 new employment under 'Honey Mission', besides creating around 6,000 additional man-days through the fabrication of Bee boxes and Honey Extractors. The KVIC has also provided the bee-keepers practical training about the examination of honeybee colonies, acquaintance with apicultural equipment, identification, and management of bee enemies and diseases, honey extraction and wax purification, and management of bee colonies in spring, summer, monsoon, autumn and winter seasons. Vice Chairman Banas Dairy Mavjibhai Desai and Chairman and Gujarat Khadi Board K Padheria were also present in the function. The KVIC Chairman also felicitated two farmers who extracted a huge amount of honey in one year from the bee boxes distributed earlier by KVIC.

KVIC Chairman V K Saxena, who himself monitors the progress of 'Honey Mission' round-the-clock, further said that besides the production of healthy honey and wax, bee-keeping would open many job avenues for the unemployed youths and aspiring young entrepreneurs. "Being the nodal agency of Prime Minister Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP), the KVIC would provide loans for setting up units of processing, packaging and labeling units for the honey," he added.

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