Last 10 December 2017, IRRI Bangladesh joined the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) in celebrating the 33rd SAARC Charter Day. It was held at the Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council (BARC) in Dhaka, Bangladesh, and was attended by NARES institutions, international, and private organizations.
With the theme "International Year of Agricultural Mechanization", the event aimed to educate the attendees on improved farm machine and technologies, and promote agricultural mechanization for sustainable intensification of agriculture to achieve greater food and nutrition security in South Asia.
A delegation of scientists and officials led by Dr. Humnath Bhandari, Interim IRRI Representative for Bangladesh, attended the celebration, which highlighted “Agricultural Mechanization for Sustainable Intensification of Agriculture”. IRRI’s farm mechanization tools and techniques, postharvest solutions, IRRI education materials, and information on other initiatives were displayed in an exhibit to show IRRI’s efforts in eliminating hunger and poverty in the Asian region.
To mark the event, Dr. Humnath Bhandari said, “Such participation is important to increase IRRI’s visibility and to strengthen its partnership with different stakeholders. IRRI’s booth was observed by many visitors including ministers, and our participation helped the institute showcase agricultural mechanization, ICT tools, and other activities across the globe.”
Her Excellency Begum Matia Chowdhury, Member of the Parliament and Honorable Minister of Agriculture in Bangladesh, joined the celebration and presented IRRI with a certificate to acknowledge its meaningful participation on this momentous milestone.