Sher-e-Kashmir University of Agricultural Sciences and Technology (SKUAST) Kashmir organised a daylong online function to mark the ‘International Day of Biodiversity.

According to a statement issued here, the theme of the day for 2021 was ‘We’re part of the solution’ with hashtag #ForNature. “Biodiversity plays a major role in maintaining the balance of the earth. It is the foundation of ecosystem services to which human well-being is intimately linked. All the variety of animals, plants, fungi, and even microorganisms like bacteria make up our natural world,” the speakers said.

The online programme with an aim to aware students and the faculty of the importance of biodiversity and its conservation was organised by the university’s Faculty of Agriculture, Wadura under the World Bank-ICAR funded National Agricultural Higher Education Project (NAHEP) for SKUAST-K. About 100 students and scientists from across the country participated in the online programme.

Also, an online quiz was held on the topic ‘Biodiversity’ in which 280 students from across the country participated. Three students from the Faculty of Agriculture – Syed Hujjat ul Baligah, Sania Soherverhy and Sheikh Faiza Riyaz – presented their views about the loss of biodiversity and how to help in conserving it.

Organising secretary Prof Raihana Habib Kanth delivered the inaugural address. Prof AH Hakeem, Dean Faculty of Agriculture, SKUAST-K shed light on how biodiversity has been harmed over time in this region and explained how indigenous species in Kashmir, such as buckwheat in Machil and Gurez and mulberry trees around orchards had been destroyed over time. He emphasised the importance of altering one’s way of life to conserve biodiversity. The chief guest of the occasion Dr OP Sharma Retd. PCCF, J&K and Member, J&K Biodiversity council introduced delegates to indigenous and exotic species found in Kashmir. He underlined the importance of biodiversity protection and conservation, its influence on the ecosystem and the lacunas in the modern approach.

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