In Didiís political aversion to Modi, loss for state farmers

Politics stood in the way of farmers in West Bengal when the question of learning new methods and sharing experiences with their counterparts from other states came up.

The state government has reportedly turned down the invitation of the Gujarat government to attend its Vibrant Gujarat Global Agriculture Summit, currently being held in Gandhinagar.

While the state government cited that Israel government will soon set up a training school where farmers can learn new techniques, sources in the agriculture department said the ruling Trinamool government turned down the Gujarat request owing to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's known aversion to Narendra Modi, whom she had earlier compared with the Congress saying they are "two faces of the same coin."

Farmers and officials in the agriculture departments across the country, and abroad, have been invited to attend the summit.

The Indian Express has learnt that the officials in the state agriculture department were in favour of attending the summit. According to them, it could have given them and the farmers an opportunity to learn new technologies and a platform to share experiences with their counterparts from other states.

"We often undertake trips to other states and participate in agricultural fairs and interactive sessions. The summit would have been greatly beneficial to us. But what can we do?" an official from the department said.

Minister for Agriculture Moloy Ghatak, however, said the state can do without the trip to Gujarat as Israel is going to set up a training school for farmers in a 2-acre plot at Adi Saptagram in Hooghly district. "We discovered that there is nothing to learn from them as we have got Israel working with us. As far as inventing new technologies to increase productivity in agriculture is concerned, Israel is the best in the world and would always be preferable to Gujarat,'' Ghatak told The Indian Express.

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