It is never easy to record history. It is all the more difficult
to do so when it involves encapsulating a world of breathtaking
developments, of discoveries, of tales of mighty men and brave souls.
It becomes almost impossible to do justice to the heroes of yesteryear
when their story of greatness spans a period of almost two hundred
years. There was greatness born out of vision, about "the capabilities
of the soil to enrich a nation to an almost indefinite extent"
which Rev. Dr. William Carey could have had it. There born Agri
Horticulture Society of India in the year 1820 in the heart of the
city Calcutta, presently known as Kolkata. The heritage of the society
is not a tall story but the toil of Rev. Carey followed by number
of devoted scientists and agri horticultural lovers over almost
two hundred years. The society acted de facto as the department of agriculture of India
till 1900 when there was as such no specific agricultural department
in the government machinery. It was Rev. Carey who brought extinct
species of plants and nurtured them in the garden of the society.
He also brought in Maize, Cotton, Tea, Sugar cane and Cinchona from
different countries and instilled plantation habit in different
part of the country.
was not designed only to please the agricultural scientists or horticulturists,
but to inform even the lay men of the momentous developments that the
Society bears testimony to. It has been trying over the century to capture
the spirit of the times, the passionate love for plant life. The adventures,
the joys of discovery, the sorrows of failure and then the zealous conquest
of new frontiers. It is this skein of excitement stemming from the pioneering
spirit that seems to have woven itself through the long years.
to prompt the Society today to reinvigorate itself on the eve of a new
era with new ideas and new technologies that are poised to take Indian
agriculture to realms of untold prosperity.