In recent times, Hydrogels are making inroads into the diverse areas of agriculture such as dryland / rainfed agriculture. Consider the following statements with this reference:
1. Pusa Hydrogel is one such material that enables more efficient use of water in agriculture
2. Pusa Hydrogel is a cellulosic super absorbent hydrogel
Which among the above is / are correct statements?

Answer: [C] Both 1 & 2

One of the key properties required for the cellulose materials intended to be used in hygienic products is their ability to absorb liquids. The absorbent hydrogels are lightly cross-linked hydrophilic polymers capable of absorbing large amounts of water. These hydrogels can be used in diverse areas of agriculture such as dryland/rainfed agriculture, hi-tech horticulture and enhance productivity by slow-release of water.

From Lok Sabha Questions

Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi of Indian Council of Agricultural Research has developed a novel cellulosic super absorbent hydrogel, ‘Pusa Hydrogel’ that enables more efficient use of water in agriculture, particularly in areas of limited water availability.  Pusa hydrogel is a high water absorbing (hydrophilic) polymer which absorbs a minimum of 350 times its weight of pure water and is of particular significance in semi-arid and arid regions. The product, when applied at the time of sowing, absorbs and retains water in the soil for extended time and releases it slowly to the plant in root zone.

This question is a part of GKToday's Integrated IAS General Studies Module