COIMBATORE: The house of 105-year-old R Rangama alias Pappammal in Thekkampatti was abuzz on Tuesday, with people making a beeline to congratulate her on being conferred the Padma Shri. The centenarian, who has long been a proponent of organic farming, shows traces of elation but responds with a humble a ‘Nandri pa’ (thank you) to the compliments.
Pappammal’s journey in organic farming started in her 30s when she bought a 10-acre plot with money she earned from running a store. Ever since, she strictly followed the organic route, Pappammal told TNIE. She currently has 2.5 acres where she cultivates bananas and ladies’ fingers.
Pappammal was also part of the TN Agricultural University’s advisory committee, and kept abreast of developments in organic farming by taking part in conferences. She dabbled in politics as well, and was a former ward member of Thekkampatti panchayat and elected as a councillor in Karamadai panchayat union.