Fencing alters Machavaram farmers fortunes

Fencing alters Machavaram farmers fortunes

Fencing alters Machavaram farmers’ fortunes.The National Agriculture Bank for Rural Development’s (NABARD) humane approach and small interventions are ...

The National Agriculture Bank for Rural Development’s (NABARD) humane approach and small interventions are helping farmers in interior villages at Machavaram mandal to overcome obstacles in their farming operations. Farmers in Kalujuvvalapadu village are confronted with wild animals which had been destroying their crops in the night and leaving farmers high and dry.

A field that was fenced by NABARD

Vexed with the wild animal menace, the farmers stopped their cultivation and kept their lands idle for two years. However when the farmers brought the problem to the notice of NABARD assistant general manager Bhavani Shankar, he came forward to finance the fencing of crop fields of farmers.

Fencing was undertaken in all the fields in 372 acres of land belonging to 90 farmers in the village which paved way for secured farming with no fear of wild animals destroying the standing crops. Out of 372 acres of land, 200 were kept idle and the farmers stopped cultivation for a couple of years for fear of crop damage and incurring of losses. Now after fencing the crops, the farmers are able to raise two crops an year and are able to earn a double income by two crops.

Tadikonda Reddy, resident of Kalujuvvalapadu village, has 5 acres of land. He has a borewell which is yielding good quantity of water. He said that a herd of wild cows attacked his crop in the night every day and totally damaged his crops. In another instance, wild boars too had a field day in his farm and damaged the remaining crop. Tadikonda stated that he incurred a loss of Rs 50,000 on his crop. Disgusted with the wild animals, he even stopped farming for two years.

“I resumed farming only after NABARD officer came to our rescue and gave us the idea to fence my entire 5 acres of land, which I did with the agriculture bank giving me a loan of Rs 54,000 and me organising another Rs 21,000 to totally fence my entire land making it secure for the first time with the bank’s help. Now we don’t have to spend sleepless nights to protect our crop,” a beaming Tadikonda said.

The farmer was able to cultivate Bajra as the first crop and got a yield of 45 quintals and a gross income of Rs 42,750 and the expenditure on the crop was Rs 18,000 and the net income earned by the farmer was Rs 24,750 on his first crop. In the second crop, sunflower was sown and yield of 17 quintals was recorded. Again the gross income was Rs 1.19 lakh and after deducting the expenditure Rs 42,000, the net income registered was Rs 77,000. His total net income was Rs 1.01 lakh in a year and he was able to repay NABARD loan at one go.

NABARD assistant general manager Bhavani Shankar says that the farmers did not even know that fencing could solve their problem and put them on the track. Another Bhoopal Reddy of the same village having 6 years of land whose farming operations derailed was able to fence his land with NABARD help and restart his farming activity with no fear of animal attacks.

By Ravi P Benjamin

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