THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Traders in Palayam are now engrossed in a different task -- they’re busy finding vacant plots of land for vegetable cultivation. This is being done as part of the Subhiksha Keralam project launched by the state government to ensure self-sufficiency in vegetable production following the Covid-19 outbreak.
“Under the Subhiksha Keralam scheme, we thought of identifying some fallow lands in Palayam which can be turned into green cover. We have already identified a few areas with the help of our members, “ said C S Ratheesh, secretary of Palayam area committee, Vyapari Vyavasayi Samithi. He said that quality seeds and saplings sourced from agricultural farms will be utilised for cultivation.
The Samiti had also felicitated residents’ associations and individuals who set up vegetable gardens at home during the lockdown period. “The initiative was basically to relieve the stress of people confined in their homes during the lockdown period. We had asked residents in apartments to use rice bags instead of grow bags for planting saplings. The response was overwhelming and 48 families participated in the vegetable cultivation challenge.
Three families from different parts of the city were shortlisted based on their vegetable cultivation by directly visiting their homes,” said Ratheesh. The winners were given a token of appreciation by V K Prasanth, MLA, in the presence of members of the Vyapari Vyavasayi Samiti, Palayam.Besides such initiatives, the Samiti contributed 62 television sets to children from financially disadvantaged families to attend online classes. A reading initiative was also held in association with CSM library, Vazhuthacaud, to provide books to people who were unable to visit libraries during the lockdown and help inculcate the habit of reading. More than 40 people were provided books.