Thar needs introduction of drought and climate change resilient crops and tress so as to meet the growing needs of food and financial benefits of small landholders of Thar Desert.
This was agreed and demanded in participatory training workshop entitled Capacity Building / Hands-on Exercise for Farmers and community activists under the aegis of Sustainable Land Management Program -SLMP II (Ministry of Climate Change, Government of Pakistan, P&D Department Government of Sindh and UNDP Pakistan) here on Monday.
The workshop was organized in collaboration with Institute of Rural Management (IRM), Sindh region. The senior farmers and youth of Thar were invited and engaged for knowledge building on the importance and challenges regarding the sustainable land management highlighting needful actions at grassroots and government levels.
The SLM training consultant, Mr. Akbar Ali Dars sensitized the farmers and community activists for the best practices of sustainable land management including the need based and efficient use of agriculture land where there was less rainfall and the new technologies introduced.
The participants highlighted the issue of water shortages and non-availability of small land holder friendly agriculture policy in Sindh. The workshop participants demanded integrated agriculture policy of Sindh with focus on Thar drought and climate change impacts.
The workshop participants also shared and highlighted the issue of drought in Thar since 2013, which according to them, the desert region witnessed below-average crop production and losses of livestock, which had worsened the already food insecurity and starvation situation in They also deplored the fact Tharis were facing grave hardships the issue of clean water due to prolonged calamity in form of no or erratic rainfall.
Mr. Zulfiqar Ali Laghari, the provincial programme coordinator-Sindh of the Sustainable Land Management Program (SLMP-II, UNDP/Planning & Development Department, and Government of Sindh) also spoke with the small land holders and the community activists for the support through the interventions of SLMP-II.
He shared with the participants about various aspects of the SLMP program and significance of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The workshop concluded with the vote of thanks by IRM and final demand of introducing drought and climate change resilient crops and trees on immediate basis and review the current Sindh Agriculture Policy, which was not an integrated one and small farmer friendly generally and particularly for Thar areas of Sindh.