EFFECTIVENESS OF AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION SERVICES IN DISSEMINATION OF INFORMATION TO THE FARMING COMMUNITY OF DISTRICT BHIMBER, AZAD JAMMU AND KASHMIR
Muhammad Asif Jamil*, Nowshad Khan*, FarhatUllah Khan* and Muhammad Zakria*
This study was designed to assess the effectiveness of extension advisory services for farming community of Bhimber district of Azad Jammu and Kashmir. The convenient sampling as well as multistage sampling method was used to collect the data from the study area. The overall data consists of 150 farmers. The study revealed that respondent's acquaintance with extension staff was very low as only 18.00% of the respondents had personal acquaintance with the extension staff and 12.67% of them knew extension staff through their neighbour, while 38% of respondents from their friends. The farmers who knew extension staff through relatives were only 16%. It was also found that demonstration, personal contact, group meetings and training were effective methods of communication. The study concluded that other sources of information i.e., relatives, friends were more influential in bringing changes in the behavior of the respondents and solving the problems of farm related issues. It was found that 38% of the aware respondents yield was 50% greater than unaware farmers. It was also concluded that 80% of the respondents had increased the production of wheat while 80.67% had increased the production of maize and 68% had increased the production of millet after getting benefits from the extension services provided by the agriculture department. It is recommended that visits of extension field staff should be made regularly. The progressive farmers may be involved in extension activities because they are less in number and are easily approachable. Demonstrations, personal contacts and radio services were found most effective methods; therefore, it is recommended that these methods should be followed more effectively and used in modern shape.