Media Capacity Building Workshop concludes


At a time when the issue of agriculture, food adulteration, or food sovereignty have been under the national discourse, a three-day long training aiming to enhance the knowledge in agriculture journalism concluded today in Nepalgunj of Province-5. The program, which was organized jointly by Media Action Nepal and HEIFER International Nepal, saw the presence of 31 journalists, of which 13 were women, from the western districts of Banke, Bardiya, Dang, Surkhet, Salyan and Pyuthan.

“This program is helpful for activating the cause of the government’s agenda of prosperity. I am pleased to hear that our journalists have come to learn skills to do agriculture reporting,” said Aarti Paudel, Minister for Agriculture, Land Management and Cooperatives of Province-5. Minister Paudel was of the opinion that landless peasants should be given environment conducive for agro-business.”

Highlighting the importance of agriculture journalism, Chairperson of Media Action Nepal Laxman Datt Pant said, “The agriculture journalism plays a major role in ensuring institutional development of productivity; structural change in productivity; denial of absolute poverty; reformation in or by agriculture; Safe and accessible health services; Social security or nutritious foods”. The agriculture journalism serves many objectives, including environment impact assessment and climate change, Pant added.

“Our agribusiness is in transition. We are not in a position to generate an expected income. What annoys many is that the state is not being to provide enough financial aid to peasants. In India, farmers are provided loan, free electricity and among other benefits. We could provide similar arrangements to farmers here so as to reduce the loss and ensure a motivating environment,” said Dhawal Samsher Rana, Mayor of Nepalgunj sub-metropolitan city.

Sumnima Shrestha, Communication and Resource Mobilization Manager of HEIFER International Nepal said, “We [Heifer International Nepal] are working under 4P model, i.e., public- private-producer-partnership. What we believe that the goals of food sovereignty and agribusiness could not be materialized unless we ensure public- private-producer-partnership in true and material sense.” She was of the view that their organization has been active on the creative and reformative fronts relating to agribusiness. “We are pledged to convince the mind of farmers to increase agriculture productivity, which is vital to meet Nepal’s food sovereignty.”

Similarly, Krishna Kattel, Program Manager-SSFO, Kohalpur Market Cluster, HEIFER International Nepal, said, “We are in this development sector since 21 years. We are playing an active role in ensuring the share of producer in agro-business.” He claimed that their organization have played an active role in women empowerment as well as sustainable development. “

The training was facilitated by Laxman Datt Pant, Sumnima Shrestha, Shankar Khanal and Jivesh Jha.