S. Sajeena, assistant professor of agricultural engineering at Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) here, won an award from President Pratibha Patil for presenting the second best poster at a three-day international conference on women in agriculture, which concluded in New Delhi on Thursday.

Ms. Sajeena was the only Indian scientist to win an award at the function. It was in recognition to her attempts to address the problem of labour scarcity and unavailability of skilled workforce in Malappuram by empowering women.

Ms. Sajeena has been taking efforts to empower the women of Malappuram through KVK since 2006. Women activity groups were formed and training was imparted to the members on the use of paddy machinery as part of overcoming the shortage of labour.

Vocational training

Vocational training on transplanters and reapers was given till 2008. The trainees were registered into a group called ‘Krishi Sahayi,' which was linked with paddy farmers.

The group helped individual farmers and farmer groups by undertaking mechanised paddy cultivation on contract basis. It helped not only revive the abandoned paddy cultivation, but reduce the cost of cultivation as well.

S. Sajeena received the award from President Pratibha Patil for presenting the second best poster at a meet

on women in agriculture.

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