Sharing a treasure trove of farming wisdom - The New Indian Express

Sharing a treasure trove of farming wisdom

Published: 10th November 2012 09:16 AM

Last Updated: 10th November 2012 09:16 AM

There was a time when farmers enjoyed a telepathy with nature: when clouds foretold the nature of yield and rain never thought of cheating the crops.

Men and women who have been out in the farms then would have a treasure of knowledge to share with the present generation.

Such a sharing, where farmers of old days will reveal their close bonding with the nature and the secrets of good yield, will take place in every panchayat in the state this November.

The Agriculture Department has asked the agricultural officers in all the districts to organise such “farmers’ gatherings” as part of the 30-point development programme undertaken by the department.

Inspired by the ‘nattukoottam’ programme initiated by the department three years ago where similar farmers’ gatherings were arranged in select panchayats, it is fanning out the idea to all panchayats this time.

“It is for the first time that we have planned it so extensively in every panchayat. It is not just a step to promote and strengthen agriculture in the rural areas, but also a means to address the labour issue that is looming large over the sector.

When krishi bhavans organise the programme in a panchayat, naturally the problems being faced by the farmers will be highlighted. Lack of manpower to undertake agricultural work will be an issue that the panchayat officials will have to address too,” said R Ajithkumar, director, Directorate of Agriculture.He said that this time the Agriculture Department is toying with the idea of documenting the experience-sharing episodes in panchayats. The home-made fertilisers that guarantee results, the easy way to tackle certain seasonal pests that pose danger to crops and many such titbits in farming once followed rigorously by a generation, is worth documenting, he said. According to officials, the gatherings will also be the venue to discuss the specific agricultural issues in the area and to formulate an action plan to tackle them. The department will launch follow-up activities of the action plan thereafter on a panchayat basis.

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