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Pakistan puts cotton disease surveillance system in place
31
Jul '13
The third quarterly review and planning meeting of the current fiscal year of ICARDA’s “Pak-US Cotton Productivity Enhancement Programme” was hosted by Mr. Zahid Iqbal Anjum, Director Central Cotton Research Institute (CCRI), Multan July 08, 2013. Dr. Khalid Abdullah, Cotton Commissioner, Textile Industry Division / Vice President, PCCC chaired the session.

The prominent cotton scientists from Pakistan Agricultural Research Council (PARC), Pakistan Central Cotton Committee (PCCC), National Institute of Biotechnology & Genetic Engineering (NIBGE), Center for Excellence in Molecular Biology (CEMB), Institute of Agricultural Sciences (IAGS), University of the Punjab, Cotton Research Institute, Faisalabad participated the meeting and presented their so far achievements (2011-13), activities during third quarter (Ap-Jun, 2013), and work plans for the next quarter (July-Sept, 2013) were discussed and approved.

Dr. Tassawar Hussain Malik, Cotton project Consultant from ICARDA-Pakistan Office, Islamabad elaborated major achievements of the project so far. He stated that selection of “Highly-Tolerant” cotton accession “Mac-07” against Cotton leaf curl virus disease screened from the imported USDA germplasm during 2012 was a great achievement of the project.

Consultant informed that a highly coordinated and disciplined national “Disease Surveillance and R&D System” has been in place and fully active under the umbrella of C-PEP programme that is not only helping to properly identify the disease and its vector but utilizing all possible traditional and non-conventional approaches for the development of disease resistant plants within the project tenure. The system is model for the country policy makers, coordinators and scientists for adapting against any kind of stress in the future if its sustainability is ensured.

Consultant remarked that import of three thousand two hundreds (3200) cotton germplasm accessions from USDA collection under all existing seed/quarantine rules during 2011-13 to strengthen the Pakistani cotton germplasm has provided a big opportunity to cotton breeders to utilize the virus free stuff in various current and future breeding programmes to develop high quality and stress resistant cotton varieties in Pakistan. He specially appreciated the efforts of Consultant to develop and successfully maintain the most sophisticated and scientific germplasm storage facilities at CCRI, Multan.

Dr. Saghir Ahmed, Botanist, CRS, Multan, Peer Muhammad Idrees, CCRI, Multan and Mr. Ali Muhammad Karloo, CCRI, Sakrand presented their work on germplasm screening and multiplication as well as utilization of the virus free accession in their breeding programmes for the transfer of resistance to Pakistani cultivars and promising lines during 2012 & 2013.

Cotton breeders deliberated on their work for CLCV Screening, characterization, multiplication, storage and distribution of the imported accessions and development of Cotton leaf curl virus (CLCV) standardized screening protocols and Disease rating scales. Role of breeders was appreciated by the ICARDA.


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