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All India Network Project on Tobacco

Project Coordinator’s message

All India Network Project on Tobacco is a distinctive mechanism for addressing location-specific problems of different tobacco types cultivated in different ecological conditions through multi-location testing and multidisciplinary approaches. In this system, ICAR-CTRI and State Agricultural Universities conduct research (finance sharing 75% and 25%) through co-ordinated multidisciplinary research on the mandated tobacco typeviz., FCV, Bidi, Rustica, Chewing and Natu. In this system, scientists collectively develop location-specific technologies which help in enhancing productivity and profitability.

The All India Coordinated Project on Tobacco was established by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research in the Fourth Five Year Plan during 1970-71 with the headquarters of the coordinating unit at Anand (Gujarat). The headquarters was subsequently shifted to CTRI, Rajahmundry, A.P. on 16-08-1998. Further, the AICRP on Tobacco was renamed as All India Network Research Project on Tobacco (AINPT) and kept under the administrative control of the Director, CTRI, Rajahmundry.

At present main network centres of AINPT are located at Rajahmundry, Shivamogga and Anand and seven sub-centers at Nipani, Nandyal, Berhampur, Araul, Dinhata, Guntur and Hunsur. AINPT has four voluntary centres functioning at Ladol, Jeelugumilli, Kandukur, and Vedasandur. The centres at Rajahmundry, Guntur, Hunsur, and Dinhata are functioning under the administrative control of Central Tobacco Research Institute (CTRI), Rajahmundry. Anand, Shivamogga, Nipani, Nandyal, Berhampur and Araul centres are under the administrative control of respective universities, viz., Anand Agricultural University, Anand; University of Agricultural Sciences, Dharwad; Acharya NG Ranga Agricultural University, Guntur; Odisha University of Agriculture and Technology, Bhubaneswar and Chandra Sekhar Azad University of Agriculture and Technology, Kanpur, respectively.

Since its inception, All India Network Project on Tobacco released 82 tobacco varieties [FCV (27), Bidi (17), Chewing (19), Rustica/ Hookah (9), Cigar wrapper (2), Cheroot (3) and Natu and Lanka (5)] with different traits, location-specific crop production and protection technologies encompassing the crop-specific agronomic practices, drought mitigation interventions, natural resource management, energy conservation, integrated pest management modules, and crop intensification interventions, etc. The concerted and coordinated efforts lead to yield improvement of bidi tobacco to an extent of 47% and 100% in Gujarat and Karnataka respectively and of rustica tobacco by 60% and 122% in West Bengal and Gujarat respectively.

Having achieved the desired progress, the project envisages germplasm evaluation for identification of breeding lines with desirable traits and development of superior location specific varieties, cost effective production and protection technologies and need based production and distribution of tobacco seed for benefit of farmers, in the next five years.