Patna: India needs another Green Revolution, President Pranab Mukherjee said on Wednesday, after unveiling the much-awaited agriculture road map of Bihar.

"There is a need for another Green Revolution in the country, and the eastern parts of the country, including Bihar, will play a vital role in it," the president said here.

Mukherjee, who arrived here on a two-day visit of Bihar, was received by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar at the Patna airport.

The five-year agriculture road map covers 2012-17 with an investment of Rs.1.52 lakh crore. It aims at raising agri-growth to a minimum of 7 percent per year, said Nitish Kumar.

Nitish Kumar said Bihar would prepare another agriculture road map for the next five years.

"We hope that private investors will invest in the agriculture sector in the state."The road map is the first of its kind in the country. It focuses on food processing, food preservation, fisheries and animal husbandry, the chief minister said.

According to the road map, 24 crore trees will be planted in the next five years to increase the forest cover of the state from 9 to 15 percent.'Vriksha Palaks', who will be selected from the poorest of the poor, will look after the trees and in return get the benefits of the tree produce.

The road map also stressed inter-linking of rivers and irrigation schemes. It has fixed a target for cold storage capacity. It is Mukherjee's first visit to the state after becoming the president.

Mukherjee will also attend the Darbhanga-based Lalit Narayan Mithila University's fourth convocation. In his speech, Nitish Kumar demanded that Bihar be given a special category status.

"It is high time Bihar should be accorded a special category status for its development. I request President Mukherjee to help the people of the state in this regard," he said.

(Agencies)

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