National Banana Festival Ends; Moots 7-Point Agenda for Betterment of Banana Sector

Thiruvananthapuram: The five-day long extravaganza, National Banana Festival 2018 concluded today at Vellayani in Kalliyoor Grama Panchayat, after putting forward a seven-point recommendation to the State government. Adv V S Sunil Kumar, Minister for Agriculture, who inaugurated the valedictory function, received the recommendations with the promise that the state government would look into them and do all that the state government can do to implement them.

The report put forth for consideration of the government include, giving importance to export of banana via sea route through the Vizhinjam Port; setting up of Banana Auction Centers in Kerala to attain global attraction; establishing a Banana Food Park in Thiruvananthapuram; setting up of a Banana Museum similar to the one in California;  seek central government intervention to start a local center of ICAR in Kerala for research of banana diversities; making use of air conditioned storage facilities so as to export banana via the sea route in a bid to overcome exorbitant air freight charges; and to encourage organic cultivation of banana in Kerala.

Adv V S Sunil Kumar shared his concerns about the rumour mongering happening in the state about the young generation’s lack of participation in the agricultural sector. Stating that just focusing on the productivity will not do, he said that giving importance to value added products is a must so as to add muscle to the agricultural sector. The NBF 2018 had brought in many innovators and small scale industries who have value added products from banana in their kitty, the Minister added.

Sri Suresh Gopi, MP, thanked each and everyone who put their effort to make the event successful. He went on to state that the step taken by the organizers –  Centre for Innovation in Science and Social Action( CISSA) will be expanded and a similar event will be conducted at Mankomb village in Alappuzha, which is the second village the star MP has adopted after Vellayani under the SAGY scheme.

Dr M G Sasibhooshan, Historian and Former Professor, who was the special guest at the function, lauded the banana varieties available in Kerala, and also dwelt upon the literary mentions of the fruit in Malayalam literature. He went on talk about the importance of banana as mentioned by writers and poets like Vaikam Muhammad Basheer and Kunjan Nambiar.

Dr C S Ravindran, Secretary General, NBF 2018 presented the report on the festival. The Minister also distributed the awards at the valedictory function, which was presided over by Smt A Sakunthala Kumari, President, Nemom Block Panchayat.

Smt Mallika Vijayan, President, Pallichal Grama Panchayat; Smt Vasanthakumari R S, President, Balaramapuram Grama panchayat; Sri Venganoor Satheesh, Vice President, Venganoor Grama Panchayat; Sri G Satheesan, Member, Nemom Block Panchayat; Smt J Girija, Chairperson, Health & Education Standing Committee, Nemom Block Panchayat; Smt S Shailaja, Chairperson, Development Standing Committee, Kalliyoor Grama Panchayat and Sri S Kumar, Vice President, Kalliyoor Grama Panchayat offered felicitations.


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