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Soil is a finite natural resource which is non-renewable on a human time-scale. However, despite the essential role that soil plays for human livelihoods, worldwide there is increasing degradation of soil resources.  The FAO Conference in June 2013 unanimously endorsed the 5th of December of every year as World Soil Day. This day is aimed to celebrate the importance of soil as a critical component of the natural system and as a vital contributor to the human wellbeing.  The World Soil Day is now being observed every year on December 5th under the aegis of the Food and Agricultural Organisation’s Global Soil Partnership. The International Year of Soils, 2015 (IYS 2015) was declared by the Sixty-eighth session of the United Nations General Assembly on December 20th, 2013 after recognizing December 5th as World Soil Day. The purpose of the IYS is to raise awareness worldwide of the importance of soils for food security, agriculture, as well as in mitigation of climate change, poverty alleviation, and sustainable development. The focal theme for this years World Soil Day is “Soils- A solid ground for life”
The state Department of Agriculture and the Department of Soil Survey & Soil Conservation has jointly organized this year’s  World Soil Day celebrations by organizing a Sate level function on 5th December, 2015 at the University Senate Hall, Thiruvananthapuram. Variuos district level programmes were also conducted  on the day by the District offices of Soil Survey and Soil Conservation. The Hon’ble Chief Minister of Kerala, Shri.Ommen Chandy  inaugurated the World Soil Day celebrations 2015  in the function presided by the Hon’ Minister for Agriculture, Soil Survey & Soil Conservation, Animal Husbandry, Printing & Stationery, Sri. K. P. Mohanan. The occasion was graced by the presence of the Hon’ble Minister for Health, Shri. V.S. Sivakumar, the Hon’ M.L.A, Sri. K. Muralidharan and other dignitaries. A marked representation of the student and  farming community of the State was a special feature of the function, with more than 2000 farmers and Students and teachers from many schools across the district attending.
The Hon’ble Chief Minister declared the completion of distribution of over one lakh Soil Health Cards to farmers of the State jointly by the Department of Agriculture and the Department of Soil Survey & Soil Conservation by presenting Soil Health Cards to ten selected farmers of the State under the new Central sector Soil Health Card scheme. The Hon’ble Minister for Health, Shri.V.S. Sivakumar released the documentary on “Healthy Soils=Healthy Life”, produced by the Department of Soil Survey & Soil Conservation to commemorate the occasion.    

A special postal cover designed jointly by the Indian Postal Department and the Department of Soil Survey & Soil Conservation to honour the “International Year of Soils – 2015” was also released on the occasion by the Chief Post Master General by handing over a copy to the Hon’ M.L.A, Sri. K. Muralidharan. The inauguration of the release of Tablet PCs for Pest Surveillance Kits to the Agricultural Officers of the Department of Agriculture was carried out by the Hon’ M.L.A, Sri. K. Muralidharan. The Hon’ MLA also delivered a pledge on the importance of soils in our lives and our role in preserving and protecting this  finite and precious natural resource, during the occasion. The Hon’ Minister for Agriculture, Soil Survey & Soil Conservation, Animal Husbandry, Printing & Stationery, Sri. K. P. Mohanan presented certificates, cash prizes and mementoes to the winners of the painting and essay competitions conducted for the school and college students in connection with the World Soil Day celebrations.
The Director of CTCRI, Thiruvananthapuram, the Chief Post Master Genral , the Director of Agriculture and other dignitaries also spoke on the occasion. The key note address on the focal theme was delivered by Dr. P.Rajendran, Vice Chancellor of Kerala Agricultural University. The inaugural function was followed by a technical session, where classes on soil health and its management was handled by Dr. Padmanabhan, Professor, Kerala Agricultural University, Shri. Roy Mathew, Principal Information Officer, Farm Information Bureau and Smt. Veena Rani, Assistant Soil Chemist, Dept. of Agriculture.        

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Directorate of Soil Survey & Soil Conservation
Center Plaza buildings
Thiruvananthapuram-695 014
Ph: 0471 2339899
Fax : 04712338500

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