National Innovations on Climate Resilient Agriculture (NICRA)

NICRA was launched during February 2011 by Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) with the funding from Ministry of AgricultureGovernment of India. The mega project has three major objectives of strategic research, technology demonstrations and capacity building. Assessment of the impact of climate change simultaneous with formulation of adaptive strategies is the prime approach under strategic research across all sectors of agriculture, dairying and fisheries.


  1. To enhance the resilience of Indian agriculture covering cropslivestock and fisheries to climatic variability and climate change through development and application of improved production and risk management technologies.
  2. To demonstrate site specific technology packages on farmers' fields for adapting to current climate risks.
  3. To enhance the capacity of scientists and other stakeholders in climate resilient agricultural research and its application.


  1. Selection of promising crop genotypes and livestock breeds with greater tolerance to climatic stress.
  2. Existing best bet practices for climate resilience demonstrated in 100 vulnerable districts.
  3. Infrastructure at key research institutes for climatic change research strengthened.
  4. Adequately trained scientific man power to take up climate change research in the country and empowered farmers to cope with climate variability.

Components of the Scheme

  1. Strategic research on adaptation and mitigation.
  2. Technology demonstration to cope with current climate variability in 100 vulnerable districts.
  3. Capacity building
  4. Sponsored competitive research to fill critical gaps


Key Features

  1. Critical assessment of different crops/zones in the country for vulnerability to climatic stresses and extreme events, in particular, intra seasonal variability of rainfall
  2. Installation of the state-of-the-art equipment like flux towers for measurement of greenhouse gases in large field areas to understand the impact of management practices and contribute data on emissions as national responsibility.
  3. Rapid and large-scale screening of crop germplasm including wild relatives for drought and heat tolerance through phenomics platforms for quick identification of promising lines and early development and release of heat/drought tolerant varieties.
  4. Comprehensive field evaluation of new and emerging approaches of paddy cultivation like aerobic rice and SRI for their contribution to reduce the GHG emissions and water saving.
  5. Special attention to livestock and fishery sectors including aquaculture which have not received enough attention in climate change research in the past. In particular, the documentation of adaptive traits in indigenous breeds is the most useful step.
  6. Thorough understanding of crop-pest/pathogen relationship and emergence of new biotypes due to climate change.
  7. Simultaneous up-scaling of the outputs both through KVKs and the National Mission on Sustainable Agriculture for wider adoption by the farmers

The interventions cover the following four modules which aims at making the farmers self-reliant:


Module I: Natural resources

This module consists of interventions related to in-situ moisture conservation, water harvesting and recycling for supplemental irrigation, improved drainage in flood prone areas, conservation tillage where appropriate, artificial ground water recharge and water saving irrigation methods. KVK Lunglei constructed Jalkund and renovated water harvesting structures.

Module II: Crop Production

This module consists of introducing drought/temperature tolerant varieties, advancement of planting dates of rabi crops in areas with terminal heat stress, water saving paddy cultivation methods (SRI, aerobic, direct seeding), frost management in horticulture through fumigation, community nurseries for delayed monsoon, custom hiring centres for timely planting, location specific intercropping systems with high sustainable yield index. KVK Lunglei introduced SRI, HYV in vegetable crops through this project.  


Module III: Livestock and Fisheries

Use of community lands for fodder production during droughts/floods, improved fodder/feed storage methods, preventive vaccination, improved shelters for reducing heat stress in livestock, management of fish ponds/tanks during water scarcity and excess water, etc. KVK Lunglei conducted demonstration on fodder cultivation and distributed quality pig breed, dual purpose


Module IV: Institutional Interventions

This module consist of institutional interventions either by strengthening the existing ones or initiating new ones relating to seed bank, fodder bank, commodity groups, custom hiring centre, collective marketing, introduction of weather index based insurance and climate literacy through a village level weather station. KVK Lunglei established Custom Hiring Centre through this project benefitted by the farmers of the NICRA village.