Kochi, Jan 23 : There should be a 'Kerala Model' in introducing technology-driven projects to upgrade the living standards of the rural community in the state, Manju Sharma, former Union Secretary of Department of Biotechnology (DBT), said on Tuesday.
Speaking after inaugurating a programme at the Central Marine Fisheries Research Institute (CMFRI), Sharma also called for joint projects with private industries to transform the lives of people in rural areas.
She also expressed serious concern over the alarming rate of malnutrition among children in the country's rural areas and called for an integrated and holistic approach for developing proper technologies to ensure the food and nutritional security of the people in India.
"Malnutrition is still a grave issue in India.
Every year 2.1 million children die of malnutrition in the country," she said, citing data of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).
Urging scientists and professionals to take challenging tasks for combating malnutrition, Sharma stressed on the need for launching different types of missions, along with international collaborations and interaction with social scientists, to address the food and nutritional issues in the country.
"A people-centred approach focusing on farmers, technological empowerment and rural community should be developed," she said, adding that women should be given special focus in agricultural innovations.
She added that introduction of genetically modified (GT) crops was a great move by the government after the green revolution.