THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Very soon, if kennels get replaced by hen coops in city homes, it would be no big surprise. For, the Kerala State Poultry Development Corporation (KEPCO), taking a cue from the growing fondness of citizens for poultry-rearing, has given shape to a project to distribute chicks in homes along with hen coops. Under the project, five chicks, five kilos of poultry-feed and a manure tray would come home if the resident shells out ` 350. The project, named ‘Nagarapriyayayi KEPCO’ has set aside ` 61.305 lakh for the pilot project in the city. The plan project submitted by KEPCO has been approved by the Government. There would be no APL/BPL criteria, instead, those who register would bag the chicks and hen coop on first-come-first-serve basis.
‘’We were limiting our projects to rural areas since we thought only people there were interested. However, starting this project in the city has a three-pronged intention. One, the chicks would eat your rice and fish waste and all. Second, you can have fresh eggs and thirdly, you could use its excreta as manure, specially now that the ‘Mattupavil krishi’ project is gaining popularity,’’ said V Sunilkumar, Managing Director, KEPCO.
KEPCO has sought the help of the Corporation to identify the residents in the city among those who come for the chicks. ‘’We would need a residential certificate since if they are a floating population, the intention of the project would be lost,’’ Sunilkumar said.
The hen coops would be portable, with automatic nipple feeders, plates and manure tray. KEPCO would also give away medicines, which would be required in the initial stages of rearing the chicks. The registration of the project would most likely be an open programme as a ward-level beneficiary list preparation would only help create disgruntled ward members, officials say. The plan now is to allow three days to get the names registered at a counter to be opened somewhere.
For the first year, only 2,700 citizens would get the benefit of the project. However, if the city responds well, the project might get extended to Kozhikode and to a municipality too.