Bhubaneswar: A program to create awareness about the harmful effect of Parthenium hysterophorus, a noxious weed which invades pastures and farmland causing disastrous loss of crop yield, was organised by the Institute of Agricultural Sciences (IAS), faculty of agricultural sciences of Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan (SOA),  on Saturday.

The program was jointly organised by IAS, the NSS wing of SOA and Indian Society of Weed Sciences with the students and faculty members participating.

Prof. Prabhat Kumar Roul, Director of the state-run Agricultural Promotion and Investment Corporation of Odisha Ltd (APICOL), Prof. Bijay Kumar Sahu, Dean of IAS, Prof. Jyoti Ranjan Das, Dean (Students’ Welfare) and faculty Prof. Saroj Kumar Mohanty attended the program.

The students took out a rally from IAS campus and proceeded up to APJ Abdul Kalam Park and Kalinga Nagar (K-8) while members of the Residents’ Welfare Association and Senior Citizens’ Forum destroyed parthenium shrubs after identifying the same on the roadside and inside the park.

Dr. Subhaprada Dash, faculty of IAS, explained to the students the harmful effects of the dangerous weed.

The participants in the program, organised to mark the Parthenium Awareness Week which began on August 16, included Dr. Anshuman Jena, Dr. Kaushik Sar, Dr. Jagdish Jena, Mr. Kumar Sambhab Giri, Ms. Sweta Rath, Mr. Subham Acharya, Mr. Rakesh Roshan Satpathy, Mr. Sandeep Singh, Mr. Rajib Behera, Mr. Diptanu Dutta, Mr. Siddhartha Panda and Ms. Chinmayee Behera.

A separate awareness program was also conducted at Chhatabar on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar city where the dangers posed by parthenium weed to crops as also to human health was explained to farmers.

Prof. Saroj Kumar Mohanty and Dr. Subhaprada Dash conducted the program as Coordinator and Associate Coordinator respectively.

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