Zero-waste hero  

Meet the only urban farmer from Bengaluru who made it to the list of environmental changemakers by National Geographic India.

Published: 02nd May 2022 01:06 AM  |   Last Updated: 02nd May 2022 11:51 AM   |  A+A-

Behind the scenes of the Nat Geo shoot. ( Photo| EPS)

Behind the scenes of the Nat Geo shoot. ( Photo| EPS)

Express News Service

BENGALURU: In 2007, Vani Murthy started composting at her Malleswaram home on a whim and posted details of her zero-waste lifestyle on Facebook. Today, the ‘worm rani’ as she is known, has a following of 23,80,000 on Instagram and has made it to the list of the ‘One for Change’ campaign by National Geographic India.

Vani Murthy

The only one from Bengaluru to make it to this list, Murthy says that there’s never been a day when she feels like she’s actually working. “I love all things trash — from composting to making things sustainable. That’s the only thing I never complain about, so I absolutely love what I do and I’m thrilled to be recognised for my passion.”

Already released on the channel, the episode with Murthy talks about her life’s journey in the composting world, terrace gardening, natural cleaning products she makes and also the workshops she conducts regularly. The 60-year-old creates her own videos and edits them for social media. “I love creating reels. I don’t do anything out of the ordinary when it comes to my everyday activities. I simply record them, edit the videos and put them up which seem to have reached a lot of youngsters who are also taking to composting and a sustainable way of life,” she explains, adding that her favourite part is using soundtracks from the ’70s and ’80s in her videos.

During the pandemic, her followership grew rapidly when she started doing more live videos. “The build I’ve had for social media has been completely organic but I don’t do collabs with other creators for my videos. I barely use hashtags even though many have advised me to use them for more reach — my videos seem to be doing just fine without them,” Murthy laughs.

She’s been loving the celebrity status social media has given her. “I was recently the chief guest for the Bangalore Plant Swap event and I had so many people come up to me to talk and take a picture. It was really heartwarming to see people recognising me and wanting to know more about my ideas,” she says.

From having regular birds visiting her garden for food and maggots, Murthy’s passion for composting has only grown over the years. “I truly believe in this cause, I do think we can all make a difference if we pitch in too. I’m just doing what I love and feel is important for our world to survive. I hope that more people will follow suit,” she says.


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