Kerala Muazzin turns barren land into a farm using wastewater

At least 600 believers arrive at the mosque daily to perform prayers and for other religious requirements.
Sharafudheen Musliyar has been working as a muazzin (prayer caller) for four years in Peruvallur panchayat. He began farming last year | Express
Sharafudheen Musliyar has been working as a muazzin (prayer caller) for four years in Peruvallur panchayat. He began farming last year | Express

MALAPPURAM: The plantain leaves fluttering in the cool breeze at a plot near Puthiyaparamba mosque in Peruvallur panchayat in Thrissur, Kerala, tell the tale of a muazzin (prayer caller) who broke stereotypes.

Forty-year-old Sharafudheen Musliyar has developed two acres of barren land of the mosque into a farmland, where plantain along with tapioca, elephant yam and colocasia are grown in abundance. What makes this farmland special is that Sharafudheen makes use of the wastewater, which is discharged from the mosque after believers take ablution for prayers.

“Hundreds of gallons of water is discharged from the tanks of mosque five times a day while believers take ablution for prayers. I did not want to waste this water. So I began using it to farm the land owned by the mosque,” says Sharafudheen, who has been working as muazzin with the mosque for four years. He started farming last year.

At least 600 believers arrive at the mosque daily to perform prayers and for other religious requirements. Most use the water stored in tanks here. The used water is then discharged to the nearby graveyard.

To use the discharged water efficiently, Sharafudheen set up a pit, in which a pump set was installed. The water from the pit was carried to an abandoned tank nearby, from where it was pumped to irrigate the plantains and other vegetation.

Earlier, laterite stone was mined from the barren land. After farming started, the place turned into a lush green plot. Last year, 200 banana bunches were reaped. Around 150 bunches are expected to be reaped this year. Sharafudheen sells the banana and vegetables at a nearby market. He won accolades after his pictures went viral on social media. “He chose to make use of leisure time and thus break stereotypes,” says mosque Imam Anwar Sadiq Faizy Tanur.

Sharafudheen also brings manure from the paper waste from the mosque and nearby madrassa by burning them. And this manure is used as fertiliser for the vegetation and plantain trees.

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The New Indian Express
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