Workshop by Public Administration, PU


Chandigarh, May 17, 2019: Department of Public Administration, Panjab University, Chandigarh under the UK-India Research Council's project "Transforming India’s Green Revolution through Research and Empowerment for Sustainable Food Supplies (TIGR2ESS) organized a workshop titled “Food Grains and Health” by Professor Richa Puri, Department of Botany, Panjab University, Chandigarh and Dr Poonam Khanna, Assistant Professor of Nutrition in School of Public Health, PGIMER, Chandigarh.
Professor Ramanjit Kaur Johal, Co-Principal Investigator and Chairperson, Department of Public Administration, Panjab University introduced the TIGR2ESS project and opined that the project aims to define the requirements and set the policy agenda for a 'second Green Revolution' in India focussing on skill development, health and well being, framed by demographic changes affecting rural communities and feminisation of smallholder farming systems. The project will develop and strengthen alliances across a carefully selected network of UK and Indian experts, build long-term research capacity and partnerships for sustainable agriculture that will set India on the path to a second Green Revolution. The project is being led by University of Cambridge in which around 20 collaborating institutions from UK and India.
Professor Richa Puri delivered an introductory lecture on “Minor cereals of the World, India and Punjab”. Professor Puri stated that out of the estimated 75,000 species of edible plants, only about 150 have been used and of these only about 30 species provide 90% of the world’s food. She further deliberated on the history of cereals. Professor Puri discussed at length different forms of cereals and millets of the world, India and Punjab and also carried out a comparison of millets with wheat on the basis of their nutrient content. She concluded that though the governments have been initiating policies and programmes to promote cultivation of millets against the dominating cropping pattern of wheat and rice but still the success of these initiatives is far from satisfactory.
Dr Poonam Khanna spoke on “Growing challenges towards healthy diets”. Dr Khanna shared with the audiences that the problem of under nutrition, malnutrition and over nutrition remains a major challenges especially in the developing nations and discussed its linkages with dietary patterns. An unhealthy diet is one of the key risk factors for Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs). To overcome this problem, people must be able to have adequate, diverse and safe diets in moderate quantity. She further stated that the government policies must aim towards improving our food systems including processes such as production, storage, transport and trade, transformation, retail and provisioning and food environment.
The workshop was attended by faculty and researchers from Department of Public Administration, interns from PGIMER and delegates from Mehr Baba Charitable Trust, Fatehgarh Sahib. Both the sessions were highly interactive and were appreciated for giving a strong understanding and awareness about food grains and nutrition.

Friday, May 17, 2019