ECOSF co-organized the 15th National Nematological Event: “Significance of Nematode Identification for Better Crop Management”

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The 15th Nematological Event; a seminar-cum-workshop on “Significance of Nematode Identification for Better Crop Management”, was jointly organized by Pakistan Society of Nematologists (PSN), National Nematological Research Centre (NNRC), University of Karachi with the support and cooperation of Pakistan Science Foundation (PSF) and ECO Science Foundation (ECOSF) on December 30-31, 2019 at the NNRC Karachi, Pakistan.

Focus of the seminar was to highlight the significance of taxonomy and to emphasize on the correct identification of nematodes for their better management and crop protection; which would help strengthen the country’s agricultural economy.

At the inaugural session, Vice Chancellor, University of Karachi, Prof. Dr. Khalid Mahmood Iraqi applauded the efforts of Pakistan Society of Nematologists to disseminate the knowledge of Nematology and emphasized to expedite the training workshop program of Nematode Identification for better Crop Protection and Management in the country. Prof. Iraqi thanks President PSN and ECOSF Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro for his leadership of the Nematological Society and support extended to the NNRC. He also acknowledged the services of Prof. Dr. Shahina Fayyaz, the outgoing Director of NNRC and announced that one lab or portion of the NNRC would be named after her and her scientific contributions would be acknowledged; the gesture was highly appreciated by the participants.

Prior to this, Director of NNRC Prof. Dr. Saboohi Raza welcomed the distinguished guests and participants for their joining the event. In her welcome address, she briefly highlighted the activities and contributions of NNRC. Afterwards, a short documentation “Tribute to former Director and Meritorious Prof Dr. Shahina Fayyaz” was presented by Dr. Erum Iqbal, scientific officer of NNRC.

Prof. Dr. Manzoor H. Soomro President ECOSF & PSN delivered his keynote and presidential address in the inaugural session. He told the audience about the establishment of Pakistan Society of Nematologists (PSN) and its accomplishments. Dr. Soomro underlined the importance of nematode identification for management of the nematode parasites of plants but also of utilization of entomopathogenic nematodes as biopesticides for insect pest management as as crop protection. He said that identification of nematodes is the key to crop management. Dr. Soomro also highlighted the role of nematodes and bio-indicators environmental pollution including oil pollution in the sea. He also acknowledged the contributions of Prof. Shahina Fayyaz for the NNRC, the PSN and consistent publication of the PSN’s Pakistan Journal of Nematology since 1983. PSF was represented by the Deputy Director of PASTIC-PSF Karachi Mr. Abdul Fateh Shaikh.

After the inaugural session, a panel discussion was held on the importance of nematode identification. Dr. Aly Khan former Director in PARC and Dr. Farman Ali from Peshawar delivered their oral presentations related to the topic. Afterwards, participants took part in the discussion on different aspects of the nematode identification and its importance in disease management strategies.

The General Body meeting of PSN was also held at NNRC on the first day. The meeting was chaired by Prof. Manzoor H. Soomro as President of PSN. It was attended by office bearers and members of the society present on the occasion. Various matters of PSN including the next elections and publication of the Pakistan Journal of Nematology (PJN) were discussed and decisions made.

Subsequently the training workshop on nematode identification techniques began and continued for two days (30-31 Dec 2019).

The seminar cum workshop was attended by participants and members of the society from various institutions across Pakistan, including; Islamia University Bahawalpur; LUAWMS, Uthal, Balochistan; Abdul Wali Khan University Mardan: PMAS Arid Agriculture University Rawalpindi; Poonch University Rawalakot, AJ&K; University of Swabi, Anbar KP, Wheat-Research Sub-Station Murree and many departments of University of Karachi. Participants were trained in proper nematode diagnosis and correct identification of nematode species in making better management decision for nematode problem

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