Andhra Pradesh

Watershed project bails out tribal ryots

Watershed scheme is being implemented in 11 panchayats in Seethampeta mandal of Srikakulam district.

Watershed scheme is being implemented in 11 panchayats in Seethampeta mandal of Srikakulam district.  

At a time when many areas of Srikakulam district are facing shortage of water owing to deficit rainfall this monsoon; the hilly region near Seethampeta have plenty of water, thanks to the effective implementation of watershed programme.

With the support of District Water Management Agency (DWMA) , a non-governmental organisation, ARTS, has been implementing the programme in 11 panchayats effectively.

“Launched six years ago, the programme have started yielding the desired results. As many as 4,985 hectares of barren land has been brought under cultivation as part of the project,” says ARTS director Nuka Sanyasi Rao. He says that tribal farmers have been made a part of the watershed committee and they are generating a decent income by growing various crops .

“Apart from paddy, millets are also being grown with the availability of water in the ponds which get recharged by percolation and run-off.

The watershed project is providing livelihood to 1800 tribal farmers and each farmer is able to generate around ₹15,000 per annum,” says Mr. Sanyasi Rao.

Aquaculture

The residents of Mandal, Killada, Garapadu, Pedarama, Haddubangi, Manda and others are also practising aquaculture by utilising the pond water which is available through out the year. “Fish varieties grown up in fresh water has a huge demand in market. It is helping us generate additional income,” says S. Savara Gopal, a tribal farmer.

Manda Watershed programme Project Officer Bendi Sankara Rao says that horticulture crops are also being promoted in the tribal areas.

Zero-based natural farming

“Mango, banana, cashew and other crops certainly ensure decent income for tribal farmers. With the support of the NABARD, we are sensitising the tribal people about marketing so that they can get remunerative prices for their produces,” says Mr. Sankara Rao.

Experts are imparting training to tribal farmers about zero-budget natural farming (ZBNF) and setting up vermi-compost units.

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Printable version | Sep 29, 2020 3:50:07 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/andhra-pradesh/watershed-project-bails-out-tribal-ryots/article32290778.ece

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