PM Modi and Jaggi Vasudev discuss soil conservation

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They shared a podium on World Environment Day to mark 75 days of an ongoing global tour by Jaggi Vasudev aimed at raising awareness for soil health rejuvenation.

They shared a podium on World Environment Day to mark 75 days of an ongoing global tour by Jaggi Vasudev aimed at raising awareness for soil health rejuvenation.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and spiritual guru Jaggi Vasudev shared a podium here on World Environment Day to mark 75 days of the latter’s ongoing global tour to raise awareness for the rejuvenation of soil health.

The “Save Soil Movement” promoted by the founder of the Isha Foundation is a campaign on the deterioration of soil health. Mr Vasudev went about it by embarking on a 100-day motorcycle journey that began in March 2022 and visiting 27 countries. June 5 marks day 75 of the 100-day journey.

He said the move was not intended to allocate large financial resources and was meant to “raise awareness” of precarious soil health. Since independence, India has striven to improve food security and, although it has achieved this, has caused deterioration in soil quality.

Mr Modi, while crediting his government with issuing soil health maps, which farmers could use to better plan their farming activities, said that saving the soil needed to focus on five things: how to make the chemical-free soil, how to save organisms that live in the soil, or soil organic matter, how to maintain soil moisture, how to increase water availability for cultivation, how to eliminate soil damage due to the decrease in the water table and finally, how to stop the continuous erosion of soils due to the reduction of forests.

Significant efforts have been undertaken in the agricultural sector to alleviate the soil problem. “Previously, farmers in our country lacked information about soil type, soil deficiency, water quantity. To overcome this problem, a huge campaign was started to give soil health maps to farmers of the country,” the Prime Minister said.

Mr Modi said natural farming contained “a big solution” to some of our biggest problems. In the last Budget, the government had decided to encourage natural agriculture in the villages located on the banks of the Ganges, which would make it a huge corridor of natural agriculture. “Not only will this make our farms chemical-free, but the ‘Namami Gange’ campaign will also gain strength.” He added that India was working towards the goal of restoring 26 million hectares of land by 2030.

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