‘India, Israel Expanding Cooperation In Agri, Water Saving’


Gharaunda: Israeli President Reuven Rivlin on Saturday said the future of relationship between India and Israel not only goes between the government and administration but between “the people of both the nations”.

Rivlin, who visited the Centre of Excellence for Vegetables (CEV), said India could learn from Israeli experience and know how in the fields of agriculture, water saving and water cleaning techniques.

Amid tight security, the Israeli President came here along with a delegation and had a first-hand experience of the protected cultivation of vegetables at the centre which was set up in collaboration with Israel in 2011.
Rivlin visited the nursery in the high-tech greenhouse located at the centre to get an overview of Indo-Israeli agricultural projects.

Asked about the Indo-Israel cooperation, the President said that the cooperation between both the nations is now being expanded in the field of agriculture, water and security while asserting, “We have to take care of each other”.

“They (India) are asking our experience to be taught here. I believe the connection between people of India and people of Israel and the understanding …. We have to take care of each other that will bring us to lot of cooperation because the cooperation started 25 years ago and it is now being expanded to a level (where) no one can even foresee in all fields of agriculture, water.

“We have any kind of necessity to carry on, we have any kind of security and we are doing all together. We are cooperating and we are not hiding from each other any kind of business we are very open,” he asserted. He further said, “I see the future of relationship between India and Israel that something not only goes between the government and administration but between the people.”

President Rivlin is on a state visit to India on the invitation of President Pranab Mukherjee. India and Israel signed agreements for agriculture partnership in 2006 under which Israel has been sharing its best practices and knowledge through professional training programmes.

When asked about the technologies India need the most, the President said that Israel can share its experience and know how in the field of agriculture and lesser use of water in farming. “We know how to do and how to arrange clean drinking water. We have every type of agriculture experience. Shortage of water in Israel has taught us to how to carry water from one part of the country to another part, how to clean water and how to bring the ability to make sea water into drinking water,” he said.

“We have lot of experiences and people of India can have our experience by ‘b-to b’ relationship, ‘g to g’….”

While taking a look at seedling of various vegetables at the centre, President said the small tomatoes which were grown here are “money maker”. Rivlin, who was accompanied by his wife Nechama Rivlin, saw the demonstration of different varieties of vegetables including tomatoes, capsicum, cucumber, chillies etc, which are grown by using poly house technique, besides having a look at the muskmelon being cultivated at walk-in tunnel.

Addressing media, while taking a look at the vegetables, he lauded the people of India for making progress in the field of horticulture by using Israeli techniques and technology at the Centre of Excellence.

“Here we are trying to give everything and our experience to help Indian people, how to do and give an opportunity to all the people for producing more,” he said.

“You are doing miracle. We appreciate (you) for using Israeli knowledge and experience to become much better… we salute to the Indian people about the ability and efficiency and using our know how to be better,” he said.

On this occasion, the President inaugurated the ‘Friendship stone’, set up as sincere thanks to the President and Israel for cooperation in establishment of centre under the Indo-Israel Agricultural Work Plan.

As many as six centres of excellence have been set up in Haryana which are for vegetables in Gharaunda in Karnal, for fruits-citrus, pomegranate at Mangiana in Sirsa, bee keeping at Ram Nagar in Kurukshetra, mango at Ladwa in Kurukshetra, floriculture in Sondhi in Jhajjar and model dairy farm in Hisar.

The visit, first by an Israeli President in nearly 20 years, symbolises the growing partnership between India and Israel. President Rivlin is accompanied by heads of business and academic delegation including 15 heads of Israeli universities. The Israeli President arrived on November 14 on an eight-day visit to India.

“Cooperation is something that not only goes between the government but also between people. We have learnt all over the world the words of Gandhi saying those who are hungry should be given food,” said an official release of Israel embassy quoting the President during his visit to Karnal.